The golden barrel cactus is a rare cacti variety that resembles a large ball with golden-yellow spines. This striking appearance is one of the reasons why it stands out as one of the most-priced houseplants.
Besides visual appeal, the golden barrel is low maintenance. It tolerates infrequent watering and resists common pests and diseases. Owing to its uniqueness, it is not uncommon to wonder how you can grow and care for this cactus.
Nick’s Garden has provided tips to grow and care for the golden barrel cactus indoors.
The golden barrel cactus thrives well in places that receive direct sunlight. As such, you should place this houseplant in a south or west-facing window so it receives at least 6 hours of sunlight daily. In situations where natural light is limited, use grow light as an alternative.
The golden barrel cactus is adapted to the arid soil. Thus, you should pot it in well-draining soil, similar to that you’d find in semi-arid areas. In particular, you should grow the golden barrel in a cactus mix rather than regular soil.
The cactus mix is available in Denver’s leading garden centers like Nick’s Garden. Nonetheless, if the cactus mix is not available, create your own. How? Combine equal parts of perlite, sand, and potting mix.
Like other cactus varieties, the golden barrel cactus has low water needs. Thanks to a succulent stem that stores water for future use. Given the adaptability, you should water this cactus when its soil dries up or once a month. Avoid over-watering as it can lead to root rot.
The golden barrel cactus can thrive without fertilizer. However, during the growing stage, you can fertilize it with a diluted complete fertilizer once a month. The fertilizer will provide essential nutrients for growth.
Refrain from fertilizing this house plant during winter. The reason? The golden barrel cactus goes dormant in this season.
Since the golden barrel cactus is slow-growing, it does not require frequent repotting. On average, you should think about repotting this plant once every 2 to 3 years. Besides size, your pot should have enough drainage holes to release excess water.
6. Pests and Diseases
The golden barrel cactus has superb resilience to pests and diseases. However, mealy bugs, spider mites, and scale insects can occasionally attack this cactus. When the infestation occurs, use neem oil or insecticidal soap to control these pests.
Periodically, your golden barrel cactus will develop a range of issues that deviate from the normal. Such issues could include browning of spines, stunted growth, and scarring. Below are possible solutions to address the anomalies.
- The cactus is turning yellow. This could be a sign of overwatering or root rot. Allow the soil to dry completely before watering again.
- Cactus is soft and mushy. This is another sign of overwatering or root rot. If the cactus is still salvageable, cut away the affected areas and allow the plant to callous over before repotting it in fresh soil.
- Cactus is not growing. Stunted growth signifies that your cactus is not getting enough sunlight or fertilizer. Ensure your cactus is sunny, and fertilize it once a month during the growing season.
Discover More Tips for Keeping Your Golden Barrel Cactus Healthy and Thriving
A golden barrel cactus’s spherical shape is a visual delight that can instantly add a touch of nature’s artistry to any room. However, this plant needs a little care to maintain its captivating allure.
In particular, you need to monitor it for disease and place it in a place with more sunlight. Moreover, you need to plant this plant in the appropriate soil and water it cautiously. Contact our garden center to learn more or acquire your golden barrel cactus.