Why Is My Cactus Hairy? (5 Tips To Fix It)

Cactuses are the most loved plants, that many people like and have around their homes on their sweet corners, and I love them too. Just saying! They come in a variety of choices, and interestingly enough, there is a cactus type that confuses some people, as it is fully hairy!

Well, you guys are here for that reason! Why is my cactus hairy? – It is the main question of this article, and I will try and explain it in the simplest way possible so that I don’t confuse you anymore. Also, in this article, you will find out some other information that is completely related to hairy cactuses!

Without further ado, let us get this article started!

Why Is My Cactus Hairy? – Is it good or bad?

You may already know that cactuses are quite strange plants as they require some things in order to stay with you. Just as you will tell everybody to not touch the spikes of your cactus for example your children or other family members, a cactus can protect itself as well and it is all with the help of the “hair”.

Your cactus is hairy because it needs protection from sunburn and frost as well. Basically, the hair that is found on your cactus has been created as a protective shield when the weather isn’t the best one for the plant.

If the cactus is hairy from the moment that you buy it, then you should know that it comes from an environment either super hot or super cold. Basically, it has already created a shield in order to protect itself from both hot and cold temperatures, that it has been exposed to.

Answering the question: owning a hairy cactus is a good thing!

Things to Know: Hairy Cactuses In General

It is more than essential to know the plants that you are using, and since above I mentioned hairy cactuses and the main topic of this article is related to them, I think that you guys should know that there are some cactuses that are known as the hairy ones, and I would like to mention some of the most known ones, mentioning the English name and then how they are known.

  • The Old Man Cactus (Cephalocereus Senilis)
  • Powder Puff Cactus (Mammillaria Bocasana)
  • Peruvian Old Man Cactus (Espostoa Lanata)
  • Old Man of the Andes (Oreocereus Celsianus)
  • Old Lady Cactus (Mammillaria Hahniana)
  • Peruvian Old Lady Cactus (Espostoa Melanostele)
  • Park Hedgehog Cactus (Pediocactus Paradinei)
  • Hairy Stemmed Rhipsalis (Rhipsalis Pilocarpa)
  • Polar Bear Cactus (Austrocylindropuntia Floccose)
  • Monkey Tail (Hildewintera Colademononis)

Taking Care of a Hairy Cactus: What To Do?

As you guys already got that the hair in a cactus is for protection, it doesn’t mean that you shouldn’t take care of them! They require and need things as well, just like any other plant that you might already own. How to take care of a hairy cactus? Let us find out!


Every plant needs water, and cactuses are definitely no exception. However, when it comes to hairy cactuses, you shouldn’t water them the same as you do with other types of plants. When watering a hairy cactus, you should wait for the top of the soil to dry out, and then you can water it. The dry top of the soil basically shows that you are underwatering it.


Even though some types of cactuses cannot stay too much in direct sunlight because they turn white, a hairy cactus needs its light and a very bright one. You should have in mind that a hairy cactus should stay in light between 4 and 6 hours during the day, and if it is more it is better for them. It is a fact that whenever a hairy cactus stays in the light, the more hair it grows.


Just as it can stay in direct sunlight, a hairy cactus needs a specific temperature as well. When it comes to the winter season, a hairy cactus should be put in an environment that has a temperature of 50 to 65 °F (10 – 15.5 °C), and during summer, the temperature should be 65 to 90 °F (18.3 – 32 °C). Whenever the temperature stands between the grades that I mentioned, you will notice that the hairy cactus will be healthier than ever.


Pests are the most annoying things that can attack your hairy cactus, and it is a bit difficult in these cactuses since they get hidden between the hair of the plant. However, in order to take care of the pests that may be in there, you guys should use 70% isopropyl alcohol, which is one of the most used types of alcohol when it comes to killing insects from plants in general. Spray the alcohol on your cactus’ hair, and you will notice that the pests won’t be there anymore. You can also spray the cactus even if there are no pests, in order to prevent them to get in there.


The soil of a plant is one of the most important things, and it requires some care and protection in general. When we deal with hairy cactuses, the best one to use is a mixture of perlite and sand. It is known as the most suitable type of soil for hairy cactuses mostly. Still, you can also fertilize it while using low nitrogen.

Final Words, Conclusion

Moving along, we cam at the end of this article! As you may have noticed, a hairy cactus is not a bad thing, completely contrary it is one of the greatest plants! It is one of the greatest because it alone can handle different temperatures and can protect itself from them so that it doesn’t really need anything from you. However, taking care of a hairy cactus is another good thing to do, of course, if you want your plant to stay longer with you.

I hope that after reading this article you guys have answered the question that you have been asking yourself, and of course, I hope you now know more things, completely related to hairy cactuses!

Have fun!

Further Reading

Read more if the problem isn’t only cactus being hairy, your cactus may look squishy too because of these reasons mentioned in the article.

If you feel like your cactus leaning or falling over, read to save the plant. Lastly, read the reasons why your cactus might be shrinking and how to deal with spider eggs in plant soil.


Aurora Hansen

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