A couple sickly cacti

AloeAzulicusJuly 27, 2014

I have two different species of cacti that aren't doing very well, and maybe you can help me identify and fix the issue.

The first is one of my fence post cacti. It was growing slower than the other, and started developing a black spot near the crown. The spot quickly grew to a blotch and spread horizontally across the near-top section of the crown. It's crispy and "sucked-in" now, but the blotch has slowed its spreading.

Could it be sunburn? It is in a partially shaded area outside, but it's also been about 110 for a couple weeks. I moved it to a more shaded area.

I'm not sure of the ID of the other cactus but It looks like a spiny version of a lophophora. I have a group of three in one pot in a mostly shaded area outside, and they were looking shriveled despite watering them frequently. I finally just sat the pot in some water for an hour, and two of them perked right up. Maybe the soil's got too much drainage? The third hasn't perked up at all and continues to wither. I tried soaking the pot again and it didn't seem to help, and I don't want to endanger the other two healthy cacti.

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AloeAzulicus

top view

    Bookmark   July 27, 2014 at 3:51PM
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AloeAzulicus

the second one

    Bookmark   July 27, 2014 at 3:52PM
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AloeAzulicus

last one

    Bookmark   July 27, 2014 at 3:56PM
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LilBit7765

Are they squishy? Cuz that looks like rot to me in the last pic I'm sure others will post with more help. What is in your soil?

    Bookmark   July 27, 2014 at 4:35PM
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AloeAzulicus

The second one is a little squishy. I'm not sure squishy is the right word, though, maybe "not as firm" is better. Should I try to isolate it?

    Bookmark   July 27, 2014 at 4:47PM
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LilBit7765

What's in your soil? Stick your finger in your mix and see how wet it is. Rot can take over a plant pretty quickly. Succulents and cactus like fast draining soils and don't like there roots in a soil that retains moisture for a long period of time. The soil should be dry when watered again. Is that just a layer of rock/bark on top of your soil? If you find that your soil is real wet I would pull them out and let them get some air and repot them in a better draining mix. If it is rot it spreads fairly quickly on my succulents I had bought one that had a couple stems that had rot and I cut them off until I got to health flesh. Unfortunately I'm not a 100 percent sure what you could do with a cactus if you can cut the bad part off and it be ok I would think it would be but please wait until someone else who's had more experience with a cactus with rot tells you. But at the VERY least if your soil IS VERY SATURATED I woul get them out, let some air get to them a little and put in a better draining mix. You can search gritty mix in the search bar and it will tell you how to make it. In the first pic is the black part soft or hard?

    Bookmark   July 27, 2014 at 5:09PM
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LilBit7765

I meant to say that rot spreads up the plant quickly but obviously if one had rot the others in the same container are in the same condition to get rot. When you pull them out you want to cut of any black slimy roots

    Bookmark   July 27, 2014 at 5:14PM
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AloeAzulicus

I pulled the trio out and I'm going to let them dry for a couple days. The shriveled one's "underground trunk" is squishy in one spot.... I don't think it will survive if I cut that off. The other two look good but the soil was wetter than I thought. I'm not really sure what it's made of, though. Mostly organic matter, small rocks, some pumice?

The black marks on the fence post are hard and crispy. I took that photo a week ago and there's some new growth at the top, but scars are even more indented into the center of the plant.

    Bookmark   July 29, 2014 at 1:54AM
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LilBit7765

The one with the squishy part on the underground trunk......,can you take a picture? You could possibly cut the bad part off and save the plant.

    Bookmark   July 29, 2014 at 9:54AM
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