Ma Osawaw
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Help my cactus/succulent is dying

I do not know what this species called, but it's dying or rotting. I nursed it back to health, but I don't know one side seems to be turning to a sickly colour and weird discolouration spots that appear on the skin near the soil.

I know that the pot is a bit to small for my plant. I can't repot it since the plant is beginning to flower and I was told to not repot it since it's flowering.

The plant survived 2 months being locked away in a dark room for almost two months, and I only managed to get a few weeks ago so I have no idea how to care for this plant. Since I'm kinda new at this.

The room I have it has a bright window, but only gets sun during the late afternoon is that enough sun light?

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Location: Central Valley, California, zone 9, container/patio gardening

I'm new to gardening and succulents/cacti as well, but what I do know may help, so bear with me.
Considering it was locked in a dark room for so long you may need to wean it back into the light with at least 4-6 hours of indirect light. I don't know what type it is, so I don't know if you should gradually put it into direct light after that, but I would start with indirect light just to be safe. Make sure there are drainage holes in the pot and use cactus soil so it has even more drainage. I would probably rotate it every so often since it's in the window. Don't water the plant, just the soil. Allow it to dry out in between waterings so you don't over water it, that's the easiest way to kill cacti/succulents.
I almost killed my aloe when I first got it for that very reason.
I hope I helped, if not I'm sure there are more seasoned gardeners that have better advice than I do. Good luck!

Greener Thumb
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Location: Canada zone 8b

I agree with mulderitsme. Gradually introduce the plant to light and make sure not to over water it. I water cacti once every 3 weeks...

Ma Osawaw
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Thanks! For the advice, and the pot does have drainage holes. Yea during the first two weeks I kept the plant in indirect light for maybe 4 or 5 hours and maybe 2 or 3 hours in direct sunlight. it's only during mid afternoon and later the window gets direct light.

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Location: California Zone 9b <3

I was expecting the cacti to look a lot worse. :)

(That is to say, after you described what happened to the cactus and that it was rotting and dying, to see the picture I thought he looked like he was going to be OK! I'm just being honest, hehe, I think he will recover. Cacti are pretty tough!)

The worst thing you can do to a cacti is water it to much, like the commenters above had said.

Oh goodness. When I first got a cacti my friend gifted to me? I don't know what I was thinking. I think I almost liked the way... that... if you water a cacti a bunch it bulges and just gets bigger? So I kept watering it and watering it and watering it. Don't do this! (I'm glad to hear you aren't doing this, heh)

Then I happened to be like, "hey let's go read some cacti care info!" one day... to find... I was trying to kill my cactus inadvertently? :shock:

I probably watered it every other day for a few months because I liked watching it swell. How awful!

I apologized to the cactus and let it dry out... well, forever. It is two years later and it has like 12 flowers on it, we now have a happy understanding of eachother! Well, at least, I, it. :D

I am sending your cactus good vibes!

I can't really see the bottom of the cactus in the picture you posted, but I have read somewhere that "discoloration" at the base of the cactus can be normal? (Maybe even more so if a cacti was in the dark for 2 months? I dunno, hehe, but like he said, he looks cute to me, or I have hope at least! :mrgreen: )

You could post a close up picture of the bottom discoloration if you wanted to discuss it further. I am happy you have rescued the cactus from the dark and are doing all you can to help him! (Sorry I masculinized "it", haha) - In my opinion, the cactus is thankful you are helping it too!! just wanted to say that part: that no matter what happens, I am glad you are trying to save it and the cactus can sure "tell" it's not in the dark any more. It's definitely suffering less! :)

Ma Osawaw
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Joined: Mon May 02, 2016 2:10 am

I do not know if this is normal.

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