Wednesday 1 April 2015

Growing Mini Cactus Or Huernia Oculata In My Garden

Few years ago, I visited Juliana, a very close friend of mine who stays in Bercham, Ipoh. She was then working in Subang Jaya and she was home for the holidays, so I took the opportunity to visit her.

On the way out after my visit, we loitered awhile in the porch area. My friend Juliana was complaining to me that her plants were all drying up while she was away. Surprisingly, only one type of plant was doing very well. I think there were about 3 to 4 pots of the same plant and they were all blooming beautifully.
The name of the plant is Huernia Oculata. It is from the family of Apocynaceae. There are many species of Huernia Oculata. It is a cactus with succulent stems.
I was blessed by Juliana with a pot of Huernia Oculata from her garden.

This succulent cactus plant is easy to grow and maintain. It can grow well in normal garden soil with good water drainage. It likes the dry weather. Even though it likes the dry weather, it can also do well and tolerate moderate rain and daily light watering. It can also adapt well in semi or partial shade.
The flower buds are beige in colour.
Huernia Oculata has small and short succulent stems. The stems are about 1.5 cm to 2 cm width/thick and the height about 12 cm to 15 cm tall. The stem are 7 angled and have spikes or teeth running along the ridges. The spikes or teeth are not sharp and prickly but can be handled with bare hands.
Huernia Oculata flowers easily and the flower is red to dark red or dark purple. The flower is 5 loped and is very small, only about 1.5 cm to 2 cm diameter. Every specie of Huernia Oculata has its unique flowers and colours.
When the flower is fully opened, the petals will curled backward. The flower is deep red velvety with a dark red or purple centre.
Propagation is easy. Just break a stem off from the main plant and let the sap dry first. After a few hours, place the stem with the broken off part on the surface of the soil. making sure that it is just touching the soil. If the need arises, use something to support it or hold it in place. Very soon, roots will be growing out from the stem into the soil.
Initially, I used a stone to support the stem in the above picture. Now the roots have gone into the soil and a new shoot is now growing from the base of the stem.

Huernia Oculata's most common enemy is the mealy bugs. When I was taking this picture, I noticed the mealy bugs sticking to the flower buds. For this plant, I sprayed it with pesticide.
Another problem is over watering. This happened few months ago during the very wet season with heavy downpour. The picture showed my plant starting to rot. I move my plant from the open and placed it under the porch, away from the rain. I removed the rotting stems and the plant is now doing well again.
The heart at peace gives life to the body,
but envy rots the bones.
(Proverbs 14:30, New International Version-NIV)


  1. Replies
    1. Thank you Theresa, yes they are, especially the flowers.

  2. The flower is very pretty and has a unque shape.

  3. Beautiful looking plant with a lovely flower, the bloom is such a lovely colour. Easter blessings.

  4. I love it, and it's tiny perfectly round flowers!

  5. cactus is a great flower we grow them at home but i never have had flower

    1. Thank you, Gosia. This cactus flower easily. Happy Easter to you.

  6. Nicely shown, Nancy

    ALOHA from Honolulu

  7. Very insteresting post about plants no easy to grow here ... have a lovely day !

    1. Thank you, Geraldine. Wishing you a lovely day too.

  8. Replies
    1. Thank you, Sharon. Wishing you a lovely day.

  9. wow got flower...hard to get flower from cactus leh . Bravo

    1. Hi Kathy, this cactus will flower easily.

    2. Hi Kathy, this cactus will flower easily.


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