Mammillaria— The Pin Cushion Cactus

The pincushion cactus is just one among the huge collection of cacti available in beautiful homes and apartments. And in the wild for that matter.

It is already a sure thing that you’re interested in knowing more about this particular cactus. We know you want it to be part of your houseplants collection, plus it’s one of the most popular cacti out there.

If the pin cushion cactus is already in your home, then you want to ensure it doesn’t just survive but thrives to change your home for the better. In other words, we always love when someone compliments our plants indoors, we appreciate them so much and i’m sure you do too!

And that’s exactly what you’ll walk away with at the end of this post. No holds barred; everything you need to know about the pin cushion cactus.

Ready. Set. Go!

The Pincushion Cactus

Scientific classification

The pincushion cactus is a common name for the variety of cacti in the genus Mammillaria of the family Cactaceae. With over 200 known species, Mammillaria is the largest genus in the family.

The first species was named back in the 16th century by Swedish scientist Carl Linnaeus. Cactus mammillaris was the name given with the second part of it being an alteration of the Latin word for nipple (mammila). It had all to do with the shape of this particular plant as you’ll see later.

Apart from pincushion cactus, other common names include:

  • Nipple cactus
  • Globe cactus
  • Fishhook cactus

Interesting names, right?

Well, here are some more of different species from this genus: Woolly Nipple, Old Lady, Cushion Fox tail and Owl’s eyes. Talk about a weird variety of cacti names!

Origin

Being such a huge collection of species, Mammillaria is native to several countries. But a good deal of plants have their roots in Mexico. The remaining minority have been traced to have originated from

  • Venezuela
  • The Caribbean
  • The United States
  • Honduras
  • Colombia
  • Guatemala

Description

The pincushion cactus has a small size perfect for these cute owl planters we have in the office and other varied shapes as per the particular species. On average, it can grow to a height of up to 40 cm and a diameter of up to 20 cm. Most plants are cylindrical, conical, round and pyramidal in shape.

Some species are grow as loners while others throw up as much as 100 little ones around them. 

This spiny hardy plant bears funnel-shaped flowers with a wide variety of colors – red, yellow, pink, white and greenish. The flowers later develop into fruits of a host of shapes and colors. These fruits can bear resemblance to a berry, be elongated or club-shaped. They’re usually red, but other common colors include white, green, magenta and yellow.

How to take care of Mammillaria

Nurturing the pincushion cactus is a breeze especially if you’re just getting started with houseplants. It is by nature, adapted to fight through harsh conditions.

So that goes to say that a little too much pampering on your side could prove to be fatal. But that doesn’t mean you completely forget about your plant. Here are a few care regimens to follow.

Watering Mammillaria Plants

The general rule for succulents applies – not too much water.

That means you water over prolonged periods of time. But how long should you wait before watering your pin cushion cactus again?

Depends with what the condition is of the topsoil that’s in your favorite pot. (This is one of our favorites in the office in case you’re wondering).

Allow enough time for this top part to completely dry out before you water your pin cushion cactus again. And when you do water, do it well, here’s a full in depth article for watering succulents that can be applied to cacti as well.

If you already have a plethora of knowledge in watering cacti or succulents, just remember to let the water run off before you stop, drainage holes are very important to both succulents and cacti.

Tip: During winter, cease watering for the whole season.

If you are unsure of how much water to give your pin cushion cactus or other succulents be sure to join Succulent City Plant Lounge to have an exclusive member answer your questions for you. The community is rapidly growing, don’t miss out on the succulent fun!

Ideal Temperature for Mammillaria Plants

Cold temperatures are a deal breaker for the pincushion cacti, it’s not like they have cute “plants are friends” sweaters laying around the office. So winter can be a rough season for them if you’ve set them up outdoors. Consider bringing them inside as the cold catches on.

For best growth, these plants need temperatures of between 10°C to 24°C.

In short, warm is the way to go.

Soil Mix that Works well with Mammillaria Cacti

The soil mix is of ultimate importance for the pincushion cactus.

Because, even if you’re keeping your watering far apart, the soil should drain faster to provide the ideal growth for your plant. Remember it doesn’t need that much water just like other cacti plants.

So your potting mix should be ideal for cactus growth. Either buy the commercial cactus and succulent mix or prepare your own at home by mixing regular potting soil, pumice and coarse sand in measured quantities.

Fertilizing Your Mammillaria Cactus

This isn’t much of a bother but it definitely goes a long way in improving the general development of your plant.

You can incorporate a slow-release fertilizer in the potting mix above and you’ll be set for life. Or, for even better results, use a specially-formulated feed for cacti every other two weeks during the growth period – any other season except winter.

Giving Enough Sunlight for Your Mammillaria Cactus

The pin cushion cacti love light. Lots of it. Be sure to give your pin cushion cactus plenty of light, for this particular plant, a normal grow light might not be sufficient enough in case you were wondering.

Therefore, it’s only sensible that you give your pin cushion the sun light love it deserves as much as possible. They will appreciate you with all the colors they can get (recall them from above).

As if we can’t say it enough, basically, they thrive on full day sunlight all year round.

How to Propagate Pincushion Cactus

The pincushion cactus can be propagated through two simple ways; offsets and seeds.

For offsets, all you need to do is to pluck them from the mother plant. Careful, don’t hurt the plant or your hands use gardening gloves if you can. Now, allow the cut part to dry up for a few days and pot the pups in a well-draining soil mix.

Side note: Speaking of the Pin Cushion Cacti, we have succulent pins of all kinds, pinning it on your book bag or tote like us in the office is the way to go, they’re just super cute!

For seeds, the process should start off in spring. Use a cacti-mix-filled flat. Sow the seeds on top of the mix and lightly cover them with sand. Keep the top moist and store this set up in a warm place. Ideal temperature should not be less than 21°C. Remember to be watering the mix so that the seeds don’t dry out.

Pot the plants when they’ve grown to a considerable size.

Repotting the Pincushion Cactus

Repotting cacti is an essential step for most succulents, if not all. Especially for the pincushion cactus that bares offsets.

As a rule, repot when the roots start showing through the drainage holes in the post. Also, when pups have filled up the container.

Before embarking on this process, be sure to loosen up the soil using something like a blunt knife or your normal gardening tool. And the soil here should be dry. Once again, dry, that’s a very important detail to keep in mind when repotting.

Use a pot just large enough for the plant. Not something major. Again, beware of the spikes. You can use a rolled up once of cloth or thick gloves to stay in the safe.

If you’re having trouble finding pots to plant these beautiful and colorful cacti check out these planters that have provide a great contrast to your cacti. Or be bold and get this groot inspired planter.

The Pincushion Cactus Pests and Diseases Problems

The most common types of pests affecting the Mammillaria plants are mealybugs and scale bugs.

Obviously, they are going to negatively interfere with your plant’s growth. So, it’s important to wipe them away as soon as you spot them. Control their spreading by separating affected plants from the rest of the pack. Spray the affected plants with an effective pesticide or a mixture of rubbing alcohol and water.

The pincushion cactus isn’t prone to disease. But watch out for any signs of rot – majorly due to overwatering habits.

Uses of the Pincushion Cactus

How many colors have you read so far in connection to the pincushion cactus? A lot! Almost as many colors that these Mammillaria yoga pants has.

From the tubercles themselves to the flowers and fruits. They’re quite a number.

To have such colors in your home can be a nice feeling. For this reason, these cacti are grown for their colors. They are valuable collections for anyone who fancies themselves as gardeners. Grab one for yourself here, they’re actually quite inexpensive!

Where Can I Buy the Pincushion Cactus?

Just about everywhere with a succulents’ section. For online, you can check out Amazon, Mountain Crest Gardens, Leaf and Clay and Succulent Gardens.

For offline purchases be sure to browse around in your local nurseries.

Here’s a full article on where you can buy succulents and cacti both online and offline.


Thinking of getting a pin cushion cactus for yourself now? Comment below if you’re going to get one soon!

If you’d like, share it with us in the Succulent City Plant Lounge, I’m sure the exclusive members would love to hear how you take care of your pin cushion cactus.

Loved learning about this succulent and now inspired to add more to your collection?! (We don’t blame you) Check out Succulent City’s new line of ebooks covering topics from, “All the Types of Succulents for Indoor and Outdoor,” “Different Types of Planters,” and many more helpful in-depth ebooks. Head to this link to view our full line of ebooks and get started with our complementary guide. 

Where to Buy Air Plants

Are you looking to acquire your first air plant or two? Or maybe you just want to add variety to your already existing collection and garden?

You just landed at the right place.

Below, you’ll get to know multiple ways through which you can purchase air plants to spruce up your home decor efforts. And maybe get the compliments your air plants and home deserve!

The options here offer a wide range of flexibility in terms of budget and the specific varieties you wish to have – so you’re free to shop around for your ultimate fit.

Where to buy air plants
striking photo of air plant @nakajinaka7

Where to Buy Air Plants Online

It is safe to say you can buy anything online these days, including air plants. With online air plant stores, you get a whole lot of advantages that add more fun to your air plants adventure.

You get to sample (and maybe buy) a wide range of species, land some massive discounts on select purchases and lots of options for the same plant – like price, shipping and so on.

See for yourself below!

Air Plant City

Air Plant City boast of more than a decade’s existence in the air plants sphere. So it’s a safe bet that they know quite beneficial information as far as these plants are concerned which is huge for you as a buyer.

Aside from that, they have lots of discounted prices on select plants – up to 70% off! That’s definitely a steal considering the experience above.

Need to make a bulk purchase? They offer wholesale options for anyone looking to grab as many plants as possible. On top of that, they offer great air plants combinations if you wish to go that direction.

Too bad it’s not just the plants. They also provide great offers on rustic wood displays ranging from Mopani, grapevine and driftwood.

All purchases above $60 are eligible for free shipping too, how awesome!

Where to buy air plants
exotic air plant @exotictropicals

Air Plant Shop

This is another great stop for both air plant collections and displays. It offers great bargains on your favorite pickings with discounts also going all the way to 70% off. Do you want to order large quantities for your event, wedding or retail store?  Then their wholesale package is just the option for you.

What’s more, they offer a 30-day guarantee on all purchases so you’re sure to get sorted if the deliverables don’t turn out as you expected. Just as with Air Plant City, they also offer fee shipping as long as your cart has purchases worth $60 or more.

Away from just beautifying your home, purchasing air plants at Air Plant Shop gives you an opportunity of impacting the lives of school-going kids supported by this store in Guatemala.

where you can buy air plants
air plant display @shoppoplarandash

Amazon

Of course, the internet’s largest e-commerce store that holds everything imaginable. Everything.

But, it can be a great option you’ll just have to look more closely combing thousands of search results to get what you’re looking for. Ugh, such a hassle sometimes!

Doing a quick search I found an adorable pineapple air plant planter made from Aieve. It’s actually quite lovely and bright!

In addition to the wide range, you have Amazon to fall back on if things go south with the seller, not forgetting speedy delivery of your plants. Seems like a good alternative after all.

where to buy air plants
tiny pink air plant @everbeautifulskin

Ebay

Ebay’s collection is just as huge as Amazon’s (or something close) only that it’s categorized layout makes things more organized and easy to find.

For air plants you have the following sections that are easily searchable.

  • Terrarium air plants
  • Tillandsia air plants
  • Live air plants
  • Air plant glasses

Awesome, right? All you need to do is head over to the category you need and check out the available offers.

Plus, most air plants are eligible for free shipping! Who doesn’t like FREE shipping, it’s almost standard nowadays.

Etsy

Another great marketplace for air plants. Lots of options for both plant species and price points.

Another good thing for you as a buyer, is the plethora of reviews on most of the plants /sellers. For a marketplace with so many options, this can help you quickly fish out the plants you want to bring home.

A few air plants have the free shipping eligibility. You can get lucky if the one you want falls among those.

Walmart

Clearly not as popular as the options above – looking at the reviews. Nevertheless, it’s quite packed as far as air plants are concerned so, lots of alternatives for you to pick from.

If you’re willing to have risks for your next couple of air plants, why not! Plus, free shipping is also available here – on a number of plant purchases.

Where to buy air plants
succulents & air plants in driftwood @fairy_succulents

Where to Buy Air Plants Offline

Just like the online option, offline air plants purchases are also a thing. And the experience has its own unique advantage – you get a feel of the plants before buying them. It could be something nice if that is your preference.

So, where can you buy air plants offline?

Local nurseries are the go-to places. They offer a great buying experience, as you’d have your concerns addressed one on one. Which greatly improved your chances of making the right decisions for your air plants, especially if you’re just starting out.

You get tips and tricks on how to best after your infant plants. Some nurseries can even have someone check out how you’re going on with your project and advice accordingly – on a periodic basis. Who doesn’t like a bit of hand-holding from experts?

The only caveat is that you may come up short on the specific varieties you want.

For all these options (online and offline), it’s best to consider your needs and choose the best for you. But most importantly, just make sure you have a good understanding of caring for the plants you’ll buy. Or your best purchase point won’t matter.

where to buy airplants
awesome air plant pots @carmenmcnall

If you go ahead and pick up an air plant for yourself in your beautiful home, please don’t hesitate to let us know what type it is! We’d love to hear your experience with air plants.

Thanks for reading with us! Be sure to join the largest succulent and cacti community here if you haven’t already.

Loved learning about this type of succulents and now inspired to add more to your collection?! (We don’t blame you) Check out Succulent City’s new line of ebooks covering topics from, “All the Types of Succulents for Indoor and Outdoor,” “Different Types of Planters,” and many more helpful in-depth ebooks. Head to this link to view our full line of ebooks and get started with our complementary guide. 

Happy planting!?

Where to Buy Succulents

In case you hadn’t noticed, we’re more than a little obsessed with succulents! While we’re not tending to the ones we have, we’re scouting out the best places to get more and write about what we learn.

The great thing about the sudden boom in popularity for the humble succulent is that we have an ever-growing list of places and ways to get hold of them. No matter your location, preferences or budget, you’ll be able to find what you’re looking for.

To help you in your hunt, we’ve put together this no-fail guide for where to buy succulents featuring some of our favorite places, tips and tricks.

Where to Buy Succulents Online

Online shopping can be an absolute godsend, especially if you have limited transport options, or are looking for something quite specific. Not to mention that you literally get your purchases delivered right to your doorstep – does it get any better?

There are some fantastic online succulent retailers, each with their own specialities and services, here’s some below.

Mountain Crest Gardens

Mountain Crest Gardens is a consistent list-topper when it comes to favorite online succulent retailers. They not only have all of the staples (think echeverias, sedums, and aloe veras) but they also offer a fabulous ‘rare finds’ category featuring beauties like crassula ‘Red Pagoda’, Indian Corn Cob, Baby Toes and the Tanzanian Zipper Plant.

If you like your succulents in bulk, Mountain Crest Gardens offer a wholesale option, where you can buy mixed packs, sample trays or a selection of over 100 succulents (which honestly sounds like our idea of heaven). Check out these 16 types of succulents to help you find the best one for you.

Leaf and Clay

It’s so easy to get lost browsing Leaf and Clay! They have a hugely impressive range of succulents, featuring rare cultivars such as Frizzle Sizzle, aloe ‘Christmas Sleigh’, and some incredible crested echeverias.

A very fun way to buy succulents through Leaf and Clay is with their bundle options. They offer bundles such as the ‘Pastel Party’ pack, the ‘Weirdo’ pack, or the ‘Awesome Echeveria’ pack, which are a great way to buy some really interesting succulents that you may not have seen or considered before!

Succulent Gardens

If DIY is more your style, Succulent Gardens offer fantastic build-your-own succulent planters and packs. Whether you want a living picture frame, a succulent wreath, centerpiece, or even house numbers you can fill with succulents, this is the website for you.

Simply choose your planter option, and you’ll receive not only the handmade planter, but the moss, dibber, and succulents you’ll need to fill it.

Amazon

Buying succulents off Amazon may seem unconventional, but there is actually a surprisingly wide range available, be it established plants, cuttings or care products! Amazon also offers great customer protection, and delivery also tends to be speedy (hello, two-day shipping!), meaning you don’t have to be without your new plant babies for too long.

Make sure you read customer reviews on each product before you purchase, to make sure you’re getting the best quality.

Where to Buy Succulents Near Me

Sometimes, online just doesn’t cut it, and you need to see and feel what you’re getting before you purchase it. Not to mention, no waiting for shipping!

Buying succulents near you also means that you’re often supporting smaller businesses or individuals, which is a great way to shop.

Succulent Facebook Groups

Don’t discount the ease and convenience of local listings! There are often local groups on Facebook for succulent sales, and some people will even offer a drop-off service. These Facebook groups are also a great way to make friends with other succulent fans, who may give you first dibs on upcoming plant sales! Here’s Succulent City’s exclusive Facebook Group.

Craigslist is another great option, and the turnaround is often great, so each time you check it you’ll find something new and exciting.

Local Nurseries

There really is something to be said for the passion of local, family-run nurseries. There’s nothing quite like browsing the aisles, picking up and inspecting the plants you’re looking to buy – you might even find you like certain varieties more in person than just seeing pictures of them online!

Due to the popularity of succulents, you won’t often find a nursery that doesn’t stock at least some. If you’re after something specific, it’s often worth chatting to the staff there – they may be able to order in plants that you would otherwise struggle to find.

Succulent garden
Succulent Garden @olivra.cactusucculents

IKEA

Yep, you read right. Head down to your local IKEA and you might be surprised by their succulent selection! The surge in popularity of succulents has lead quite a few home decor shops to start selling them, and IKEA is known for the quality and affordability of their plants.

Not to mention that once you’ve finished browsing the succulent aisle, you can grab the perfect pot too!

Where to Buy Cheap Succulents

If you’re on a budget, or simply trying to spend less on succulents (we feel you!), there are some great cheaper options that will still get you some fantastic plants. Curious? We thought you would be!

Rareplant

If you have the patience and the passion, a very cheap way to buy succulents is as seeds. Rareplant offers worldwide shipping on their amazing range of seeds, and the quality of their product is fantastic. They also offer mixed packs, as well as a great range of rare seeds. Price-wise, a bag of 20 seeds sells for around $4.99, depending on the variety you choose.

As if these seeds aren’t low cost already, here’s an extra 20% off for you if you’d like to add more to your collection, just use our awesome code SUCCULENTCITY at rareplant.me

Of course, growing succulents from seeds takes time, but it is surprisingly easy, and incredibly rewarding to see them sprout and grow before your eyes!

Succulent Subscription Box

Succulent subscription box
The Succulents Box@thesucculentsbox

A succulent subscription box is as fantastic as it sounds. For a low price (starting at around $12 for basic boxes), you will receive a box of succulent cuttings and accessories, care tips, and how-tos delivered to your door each month.

Some great subscription boxes are Succulent Studios, Succulent Lovers, and Succulents Box, all sold through CrateJoy.

Succulent Trading

Often, the cheapest way to buy succulents is to not buy them at all! If you’re friends with other succulent fans, or you’re part of a local group, how about arranging a succulent swap? Due to their ease of propagation, succulent swaps can be a fantastic way to get hold of some weird and wonderful varieties, as well as to share your collection with others.

Be sure you know if you’re trading for a healthy succulent though. Read our in depth article about why your succulents are dying so that you’re not trading for bad succulents.


We hope this guide helped you in your succulent-buying journey! As you can see, there are so many options when it comes to purchasing succulents, which is not only exciting and fun, but incredibly convenient.

Once you find your next succulent plant to purchase be sure to read our propagating article to learn the tips and tricks that thousands have already benefited from.

Where is your go-to place to buy succulents? Let us know!

Enjoyed learning about Where to buy Succulents? If so, you’ll really enjoy the ebook about Rare Succulents You Wish You Knew About. With this ebook you’ll find yourself more detailed answers that’ll help your succulent grow even better! With thousands of succulent lovers enjoying our ebooks, you don’t want to miss out on what works the best to grow your succulents.

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