Melon cactus (Melocactus) profile

Written by Maggie

Mar 18 2021

Melon cactus (Melocactus) profile

Melon cactus is a cactus plant (Melocactus), native to the Caribbean coast of South America, and in the flower form is special. In the mature stage, there will be at the top of the sphere secretary a clump of villous.

Melon cactus picture

Melon cactus

Melon cactus info

Botanical Name Melocactus
Common Names Melon cactus, Turk's cap cactus
Plant Type Cactus
Sun Full sun
Hardiness Zones 10–11 (USDA)
Flower color Pink, red
Native Area Central America, South America
Mature size Up to 3 ft. tall, 1 ft. wide

The morphological characteristics of Melon cactus

Melon Cactus' spheres vary in size and are mostly green with edges ranging from 9 to 20. The spines are conical, diamond-shaped and needle-shaped, with different lengths, including reddish-brown, purplish-red, yellow-brown and gray. At the flowering age, the apex of the orb is made up of bristle-like spines and dense woolly hairs. The orb generally does not grow any longer after formation, but the orb grows taller each year. Pink or red flowers may appear on the base.

Melon cactus' ecological habits

Melon Cactus is partially born in a tropical maritime climate, with an annual average of 25-26 ° C, an annual rainfall of about 2,000 mm, and no dry season; The other part is distributed in the inland mountainous areas with not too high altitude, located in the tropical or subtropical dry and wet season climate zone, there is a long dry period every year, the daily range and annual range of temperature are large, but there is no frost in winter. The sun is strong and the wind is strong in these areas.

How to grow and care for Melon cactus


Melon cactus want full solar to grow their best, which means at least six hours of direct daylight on most days. If you are developing them indoors, locate the pot through your brightest window, and carry it backyard in the heat climate if feasible to get direct sun.


Melon cacti decide upon a sandy or rocky soil with superb drainage. Poor soil drainage can rapidly reason root rot on a plant. For container plantings, a well-draining cactus potting combine ought to work. A barely acidic to impartial soil pH is ideal.


Melon cactus likes an average quantity of moisture. Give them some water on every occasion you stick your finger into the soil and it feels dry a few inches down. Don’t ever let the soil dry out completely, however be cautious now not to water so regularly that the soil is continually wet.

Temperature and humidity

Tropical temperatures are best for Melon cactus. These flora aren’t bloodless hardy, and frost can kill them. A temperature above 70 stages Fahrenheit is best. Protect your cactus from temperatures that drop beneath 60 stages Fahrenheit, as properly as from bloodless drafts such as these from an air conditioner. Humidity commonly isn’t a difficulty for the plant as lengthy as it’s in well-draining soil.


Feed melon cactus with a balanced cactus or succulent fertilizer all through the spring and summer season to raise growth. No fertilization is fundamental at some stage in the fall and wintry weather months.


When grown in a container, the melon cactus likes to be a little cramped. Choose a pot that’s barely larger than its root ball, and make certain the pot has adequate drainage holes. An unglazed clay pot is recommended due to the fact it additionally will permit extra moisture to get away through its walls. Plant the cactus with a nice cactus potting mix. You'll in all likelihood prefer to put on thick work gloves to do this to defend your fingers from the cactus spines.

How regularly you have to repot Melon cactus will rely on the character species’ increased price and mature size. In general, repot when the roots have taken up all the container house and are beginning to spill out. The nice time to repot is in the spring at the beginning of the developing season. Select simply one container dimension up for your plant. Gently ease the root ball out of the historic container, and set it in the new one, filling round the roots with sparkling potting mix. Be positive to replant the cactus at the equal depth it used to be in the unique container.

Melon cactus

Melon cactus varieties

There are various species and types of melon cactus, including:

Melocactus azureus: This species is native to Brazil and sports activities a frosty blue physique with white to brownish spines.

Melocactus broadwayi: This is a small species with a gray-green physique and red to crimson flowers.

Melocactus concinnus: This is some other small species that usually matures at solely 6 inches high.

Melon cactus propagation

Melon cactus propagates by sowing and grafting. Grafting stock more than the amount of feet. As long as the winter rootstock can safely overwinter, Melon cactus will not be hurt.

Melon Cactus' area of distribution

Melon Cactus is native to tropical America.

Melon Cactus' garden use

Melon Cactus is a fine variety for potted viewing.

Melon cactus