The 3 largest cacti on Earth

Review of the best according to the editors. About the selection criteria. The the material is subjective, is not advertising and is not serves as a guide to the purchase. Before purchase is needed consultation with a specialist.

Cacti appeared on Earth tens of millions of years ago, but beyond such a long period of its existence did not attract much human attention. Only at the beginning of the 18th century did the famous botanist Karl Linnaeus proposed creating a classification according to which cacti allocated in a separate view. For an incredibly long life plants on earth among the succulents appeared a lot of real giants. Next – the top 3 most impressive of them.

Giants among succulents: top 3 largest cactus on The earth

Nomination a place name Diameter Height
Giants among succulents: top 3 largest cactus on The earth 1 Ferocactus 1 meter 4,5 meters
2 Giant Carnegia (saguaro) 3 meters 14 meters
3 Cereus 15 meters


Rating: 4.8


The plant was discovered back in the 18th century. Interesting find discovered botanist William Houston. Immediately after detection he hurried to inform the world cactus about it. IN translated the name of the cactus means “cruel and wild cactus.”

A unique sized flowering plant lives in the absolute wilderness, in the endless steppes of North America, close to deserted by the scarcity of vegetation and moisture. Ferocactus often can be found in desert states (e.g. New Mexico or Utah). And this is not surprising, since ferocactus they love a hot, dry climate (by the way, they can withstand frost, but not very long).

Often a cactus in shape resembles a ball or cylinder, armed in dense rows of fierce sharp spikes. Some varieties the plants are truly gigantic in size. A striking example is Ferocactus pilosus. A variation of one of the largest cacti on the planet reaches 1 meter in diameter and 4.5 meters in height. Flowering is observed only in old specimens, while the flowers appearing on the plant are quite large size, have a red or yellowish tint.

Interesting fact. Large ferocactus should be carefully outstanding, but here are smaller instances of Native Americans widely used in everyday life. Young flowers are eaten as cabbage, previously boiled in water. The pulp of the trunk is often used as an ingredient in the manufacture of sweets.

Giant Carnegia (saguaro)

Rating: 4.9

Giant Carnegia (saguaro)

Giant carnegia or how the Mexicans call it saguaro – one of the largest cacti in the world. Discovered in 1988. A huge cactus grew in one of the American states (Arizona) to incredible size – about 17.5 meters in height. Incredible because such a height can be comparable, for example, with a 7-story home.

The largest saguaro species among cacti that still lives is a specimen that has reached a height of almost 14 meters and 3 meters in diameter, grew up in the South American district of Marikup. Giant flowers are considered the emblem of the state in which it grows. To understand the magnitude just the flowers, it’s enough to mention the size of their stamens: often birds make nests between them. It is worth noting that the Arizona giant is not the only one. For example, in Mexico is growing many huge cacti.

Many saguaros reach a height of about 12-13 meters, weight makes an incredible 6-10 tons. But in order to achieve such incredible size, saguaro takes a lot of time. For the first 30 years of his life, a cactus barely exceeds a height of 1 meter. Then a period of rapid growth begins – in this phase of its existence the plant daily adds 1 millimeter in height.

Only after reaching the age of 75, does a cactus acquire its characteristic appearance – a powerful trunk with no less massive side processes. The average age of giant carnegia is unbelievable as for succulents – 150 years.

Arizona takes care of vulnerable cacti: inflicting harming slowly growing succulents is strictly prohibited on legislative level. Even during construction work in Mandatory consideration is whether cacti will be affected. To prevent the cult symbol of the Old West from disappearing, it was decided to protect huge territories Arizona leafless saguaro forests: in 1994 was formed Saguaro National Park.

And while giant cacti are a rather unusual sight, visit the park is worth it to see with your own eyes the unusual world of the Sonoran Desert – the Green Desert. The fact is that she considered one of the most flowering on earth. Yes, and the animal world is here quite diverse: even 100-year-olds are found in Sonora turtles.


Rating: 5.0


Among the Cereus there are many large succulents, but speech will talk about the most outstanding in the literal sense of the word instance, True, more on that later. A huge succulent cereus arose on Caribbean islands formerly considered the West Indies. Today he found in any part of America. As expected, cereus loves the desert, therefore, it is found exclusively on such territories.

The stem of the plant has the shape of a cylinder, its average height is 13-15 meters, the average weight is more than 6 tons (sometimes – exceeds 10 tons). Cereuses have up to 70 years of age cylindrical shape. After overcoming this life span the plant begins to actively “build up” side branches. Vital the cycle of cereus reaches 300 years, making it one of centenarians among the terrestrial flora.

Interesting fact. Fruits ripening on giant cacti Cereus (and not only), suitable for eating. You can publish them take for ordinary tomatoes. Succulent fruits can save life for the traveler, becoming an excellent alternative to food and water. But the fruits of a cactus are not just edible: they contain an impressive vitamin and mineral complex. They are often used as the main ingredient in the manufacture of local spirits.

The largest representative of cereus is considered the famous 200-year-old California giant, reaching 25 meters in height. Succulent is officially considered the largest in the world – it is listed in Guinness Book of Records. According to researchers, this Cactus – a real reservoir: inside its trunk contains more than 2 tons of moisture. By the way, the California giant, like largest saguaro growing in the state of the us state Arizona.

Is it possible to grow “giants” at home?

Of course you can. For comfortable growth of ferocactus well-lit place, constant access to fresh air, high-quality substrate for succulents, moderately moist air (in ideally – dry). Ferocactus does not need additional moisture – sometimes it is enough to wash off the dust from the surface of the plant with the help of a warm shower.

Home-grown Carnegia is quite large cactus. It grows slowly and never big. The place for cultivation should be as sunny as possible, watering should be rare. Carnegia air loves very dry but exceptionally clean. Not even the smallest drafts are permissible.

Cereus growing at home is a real pride for any grower. Cactus blooms even indoors, but for this It is important to comply with a number of requirements. Firstly, quality lighting. Secondly, the constant access of moisture (not watering, but spraying a couple once a week) and watering exclusively with filtered water. Thirdly, the soil used for planting cereus should contain brick crumbs and sand.

Attention! This rating is subjective, not advertising and does not serve as a guide to the purchase. Before the purchase consultation with a specialist is necessary.

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