Project Description

Acanthocereus tetragonus

Fairy Castle Cactus

This miniature columnar cactus grows hundreds of green branches. As it grows, the branches clump together vertically, forming the turrets of a “fairy castle.” Each stem has five sides with short white spines growing along the ribs. It grows well indoors, and is perfect for beginners.
Although it rarely blooms, and can take years before it is mature enough to do so, “Fairy Castle Cactus” produces white or yellow flowers.

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Quick Look:
  • Partial sun to partial shade

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  • Can be grown indoors if given enough light

  • Typical water needs for a succulent

  • Plant grows up to 6′ (1.8 m) tall

  • Zone 10a (Minimum 30° F | -1.1° C)

  • Not cold hardy

  • Propagation by stem cuttings and seeds

  • Generally non-toxic

  • Actively grows in Spring and Fall

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Care and Propagation Information

General Care for Acanthocereus tetragonus “Fairy Castle Cactus”

Acanthocereus tetragonus “Fairy Castle Cactus” is a wonderful succulent for beginners. It grows slowly and does well indoors. The name Acanthto comes from the Greek word akantha meaning “thorn.” This is good to remember when handling this cacti, as it has many spines.

Watering

Acanthocereus tetragonus “Fairy Castle Cactus” has typical watering needs for a succulent. It’s best to use the “soak and dry” method, and allow the soil to dry out completely between waterings. Water less during Winter months.

Where to Plant

“Fairy Castle Cactus” is not cold hardy, so if you live in a zone that gets colder than 30° F (-1.1° C), it’s best to plant this succulent in a container that can be brought indoors. It does well in partial sun to partial shade.

Pairs Well With

Faucaria tigrina “Tiger’s Jaw”

How to Propagate Acanthocereus tetragonus “Fairy Castle Cactus”

Acanthocereus tetragonus “Fairy Castle Cactus” can be propagated from stem cuttings or seeds, although you may experience the best success with stem cuttings.

Cuttings

To grow “Fairy Castle Cactus” from cuttings, use a sterile, sharp knife or pair of scissors. Remove a stem from the main plant, and allow it to callous for several days before placing on well-draining soil. Water whenever the soil has dried out completely.

Seeds

“Fairy Castle Cactus” can be propagated from the seeds of its fruit, although this is not recommended as it’s such a slow grower. Sow your seeds in a well-draining soil. You can grow “Fan Aloe” seeds outdoors if you live in an zone above 9a. If you live in a cooler area, you can begin sowing indoors under a grow light or on a seed mat.

Additional information

There are many differing opinions on how “Fairy Castle Cactus” should be named and classified. It is thought to be a dwarf version of Cereus hildmannianus uruguayanus, or a mostrous form of Acanthocereus tetragonus.

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