How to Plant Cactus Seeds

While most cacti can be propagated from pieces or offshoots, growing cactus from seed is a rewarding and inexpensive method of growing rare specimens or your favorite cacti species! Nothing can compare to seeing the seeds germinate and the tiny cacti forming and growing into mature cacti!

Where to Get Cactus Seeds

Seeds are usually harvested from dried out flowers or cactus fruits (like dragonfruit — yum!). Since most of us don’t have flowering cacti or cactus fruits on hand, you can shop online! is a reputable seed store with cactus, lithops, mesembs, and other succulent seeds. There are also many good stores on Etsy and perhaps eBay if you check for authentic reviews.

Some of my favorite cacti are astrophytum—their nearly perfect symmetrical growth is so beautiful and these types usually aren’t at your local garden stores, making them hard to procure unless you go online.

Astrophytum seeds

Planting Cactus Seeds

It’s very easy to plant cactus seeds! You just need a few things: a clean container with drainage, seed starting mix, your cactus seeds, and some water! You will also need plastic wrap or a zipper bag that can cover your container.

Here in our video, I reused a clean plastic container for spinach so you don’t even have to go out and buy new seed trays! See how I planted my seeds:

Here are the text directions:

  1. Prepare your supplies. I recommend the soil, but if you get other soil, I highly recommend baking the soil at 350°F for 45 minutes to kill any bugs, eggs, or mold spores and adding perlite, sand, or pumice to increase drainage.
  2. Pour your soul into the container and make the surface even.
  3. Evenly spread the seeds over the soil and moisten the soil thoroughly, but without soaking it.
  4. Cover your container with plastic wrap or a zipper bag to keep the humidity in. Keep warm.
  5. Keep soil moist during the germination stage. Once seedlings appear, remove the cover and let have some sun, increasing the sun exposure a little each day.
  6. Repot plants once seedlings are well established or they start running out of space.

Have you grown cactus by seed before? Which are your favorite cacti?


Germinated Astrophytum Mix

The above photo is 7 days in. Twentytwo days in and the seedlings are still going strong! I’ve been keeping the soil moist and the seedlings get afternoon sun. I will need to start exposing the seeds to morning sun a little bit at a time so they can get stronger for the summer.

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