How to Water Bunny Ear Cactus?- Are You Destroying Your Rabbit Cactus?

How to Water Bunny Ear Cactus?

Do you have cacti or succulent plants in your home? There is a lot of misconception about these plants, they are generally considered to be very resistant and easy to care for, but that is not entirely true. The fact is that these plants are not able to survive without water, even if it is actually the excess of water that is the most dangerous for them. So don’t forget that these plants will thank you for more water than less!

They do need occasional watering to be able to withstand drought and store water in their tissues. However, cacti are afraid of stagnant humidity: they must therefore be grown in a well-draining substrate, and place a layer of drainage at the bottom of the pot (clay balls, gravel, etc.).

You can also place small gravel or coarse sand on the surface of the substrate, to insulate the cactus from moisture.

Yes, we know, watering a  bunny cactus can seem difficult. But it’s not as complicated as you think! To help you water your bunny ear cacti correctly, we have prepared a list of tips for you. Simply place a saucer under the pot. This will make it easier to manage water! After taking these precautions, discover all our tips for watering your cacti according to their needs.

During their growing season in the spring and summer, water the cactus when the top inch of soil is dry. Give it enough water so that it drains out of the bottom and then get rid of the excess water from the tray underneath. 

In the fall and winter, watering lightly every 3 to 4 weeks will be enough. The cactus goes into a sort of dormancy period and will not require much water. 

The most common mistake people make when watering their plants is overwatering. This is one of the easiest mistakes to avoid because all it takes is a quick check to make sure the top of the soil isn’t wet before you water it. 

Both overwatering and underwatering can result in a droopy, discolored cactus. If your cactus is not doing well, the first thing to check is the soil moisture.

Bunny Ear Cactus

  • Female common name: Rabbit ear
  • Latin name: Opuntia microdasys
  • Family: Cactaceae
  • Type of vegetation: Non-hardy perennial cactus
  • Type of foliage: Persistent and fine thorns
  • Culture start period: Sowing and stem cuttings in spring and summer. The sowing is very long, it is preferable to proceed by cuttings.
  • Flowering period: Flowers in summer
  • Color: white, yellow
  • Pests: Cochineal
  • Diseases: Rotting if overwatered
  • Some Species / Varieties: Opuntia microdasys “Albispina”: White flowers.

When to Water Bunny Ear Cactus and How Often?

Water them regularly throughout the growing season, from spring to fall. In summer, you can water once a week. In general, always wait until the substrate has completely dried before watering again.

In autumn, gently space out the waterings, then stop them completely, because the cacti fear winter humidity. Then resume watering very gradually in the spring, otherwise, the epidermis would risk cracking.

Generally speaking, you can water once every 15 days in spring and autumn, and once a week in summer.

The higher the temperature where you grow your cactus, the more frequent watering will need to be. A bunny cactus grown in a greenhouse or conservatory will need to be watered more regularly than if you leave it inside your home.

If you have recently planted or repotted your cacti, wait at least 15 days before watering, to allow any damaged roots to heal. Otherwise, they risk rotting.

If your cacti are in the ground, they generally don’t need to be watered. We advise you to shelter them from the rain during the winter, by installing a small removable structure above them. You can also install them under a roof overhang so that they do not receive rain.

How to Water Them and How Much Water to Bring?

Bunny. Cacti actually have a preference for slightly acidic pH. You can neutralize limescale by diluting a few drops of white vinegar in the irrigation water or using demineralized water. We also advise you to use water at room temperature.

When you water, direct the jet towards the substrate, avoiding wetting the stem and the thorns of the cactus. Water slowly and gradually, until you see the saucer fill with water. Then empty it, because the water must not stagnate, to allow the substrate to dry quickly. Make sure it is completely dry before watering again.

“If your soil is well-drained, but you think it still retains too much moisture, try using a bare clay pot. These have a porous surface that allows water to evaporate through it.”

How to Tell If a Bunny Ear Cactus Is Suffering from Excess Water?

If you love bunny ear cacti, you’re likely familiar with the dreaded signs of an overwatered plant. A soggy pot, water pooling at the bottom, and droopy leaves are all tell-tale signs that your succulent or cactus is in trouble.

One of the most common causes of cactus rot is overwatering. A cactus can easily be over-watered if you are using a watering can or hose to water it. If you water the plant until the water flows out freely from the bottom of the pot, you are likely giving it too much water. The best way to check for excess moisture is to stick your finger into the soil up to the first knuckle. If it is wet, do not water it. You may want to avoid watering your bunny ear cactus until you start to see new growth at the base of its stem.

Is It Possible to Save a Bunny Ear Cactus That Has Been Overwatered? How to Do?

Bunny ear cactus is a kind of succulent, which means that it’s able to store water in its leaves and stems. Therefore, it’s more likely to be injured by too much water than by too little. When overwatered, the plant becomes soggy and loses its shape. Still, the plant can recover from a small soak, but to do that you need to remove the substrate (compost) and let it dry thoroughly. If the damage is serious, you’ll need to cut off the affected parts.

If your bunny ear cactus has been affected by overwatering and starts to rot, you shouldn’t try to save it; instead, you should cut off the affected parts, using a disinfected knife. Then apply charcoal powder to the wound, to prevent the development of disease.

Afterward, empty the saucer and put some substrate in it again. 


Why Is My Bunny  Plant Growing Long, Skinny Paddles?

The bunny ear cactus grows best in full sun with well-drained, sandy soil. If you have been keeping your plant next to a window with bright, indirect light, you may be wondering why your plant looks like it’s stretching out long, skinny paddles. It’s because the plant is trying to get more light! bunny ear cactus needs plenty of sunlight to thrive.


Anwar Hossain

My name is Anwar Hossain. I am a cactus lover, researcher, and cactus blogger.

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