I originally cut some Opuntia pads I got from a seller into half and planted them in the centre of pots. Unfortunately, they seem to be growing on one side only and I fear they will get too heavy and tilt as time goes.

Please see image. Would it be better to cut at the base of the off-shoot and re-plant in the centre? I will wait till the two new pads on top grow to some extent, of course.

Or would it be better to just leave it as-is?

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2 Answers 2


I think, from the sound of your request, that you'd be happier with a centered plant. Centering, however, will not prevent the plant from tilting and perhaps even falling from weight as it grows (a perfectly natural method of self-propagation for Opuntias), it will simply mean that you will have a more aesthetically pleasing looking potted display (in my opinion).

Simply grab some heavy duty leather gloves and gently cradle the plant (around its base) while inverting the pot. Gently tap on the bottom (or have someone else do it), until it all slides out. All this might not even be necessary considering how shallow and unsubstantial the roots of the new plant probably are. You might simply be able to take a trowel around it to a sufficient depth the remove it completely intact. Just be sure to use those gloves!

Carefully break away any excess soil and gently position and replant the cactus into a more desirable pot/location/rotation using, of course, a suitable, quick-draining medium.

Alternatively, leave it as-is. Too much bother to cut, callous and wait yet again for it to establish new roots.

enter image description here


Lots of plants, especially cactus, grow to maximize light exposure.

I would leave it as it and change the pot orientation, maybe turn it 180°. It should help the existing part grow toward the center of your pot.

It would be such a shame to cut so healthy looking bud, provided its the only one on the plant. Anyway, you can cut if you want absolutely, but its likely to regrow in the same spot.

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