I was giggling when I overheard an employee at our local home improvement store telling a customer that you couldn’t grow any form of cactus outdoors in Wisconsin. Oh, really? Can’t you? Growing cactus outdoors in cold weather climates I beg to differ.
I have a different opinion on growing cactus in cold weather climates. You most certainly can. I have had wonderful luck with my Yellow Rose of Texas Prickly Pear Cactus outdoors in Green Bay, WI along my garage. Let’s face it, if the Home of The Frozen Tundra can grow cactus, you can too.
Each cactus in the prickly pear family is planted from a nopale (or prickly pear pad) or by seed. The colors of the flowers also can range in a variety of colors. My plant variety is yellow and is called The Yellow Rose of Texas.
The plant is growing along my garage and I leave it there year round. I do not dig it out and it comes back each spring.
What Family Do They Belong To…
Cacti are part of the succulent family. Succulents can store water in their roots, stems, and leaves. But not all succulents are cacti. A cactus has small bumps where there spines, pads and flowers grow from.
Purchase Your Own Cactus and Supplies…
Schultz 2-7-7 Cactus Plus Liquid Plant Food 4 fl.oz
Prickly Pear Cactus 15 Seeds – Mixed Opuntia Species
Prickly Pear Cactus (Large Spikes)(live Bare Root Plant)
How To Plant…
1.) Choose a bright and sunny location with well-drained soil.
2.) You can choose to plant them in a raised bed if desired.
3.) The soil for planting only needs to be average with no clay.
4.) The root system is extremely shallow. Be sure to mulch around the base of your cactus.
1.) I have found if you place mulch around the base you do not have to water that all. Mother nature is all your plant will need.
2.) Cover cactus with burlap in late in the fall, once the cactus starts to dry up. This will help protect the plant from harsh winds.
3.) In spring remove the burlap and add another layer of mulch around the base to help the plant keep an even heat during spring and summer.
That is it. Simple! You can grow cactus in cold weather climates. They even bloom 🙂