Propagation

How to Propagate a Bunny Ears Cactus

The great thing about Bunny Ears Cacti is that they are super easy to propagate, which is good news for plant parents everywhere.

How to Propagate a Bunny Ears Cactus

Although they might sound cute and cuddly, Bunny Ears Cacti are still houseplants you need to be careful of as their bristly hairs are sharp and cause irritation when touched. This is their in-built security system that stops them from being eaten or harmed. But the great thing about Bunny Ears Cacti is that they are super easy to propagate, which is good news for plant parents everywhere. 

In this post, we will be showing you the best method to propagate your Bunny Ears Cactus, including a detailed step by step, a list of things you’ll need as well as how to diagnose and fix any issues along the way. By the end, you’ll be fully equipped with all the information you need to successfully propagate a Bunny Ears Cactus.

Why propagate a Bunny Ears Cactus?

Before we get into the step by step process of propagating a Bunny Ears Cactus, we thought it would be important to go through the various reasons you might want to or even need to propagate them. Firstly, it’s a great way to expand your urban jungle without having to spend any more money! They also make great gifts for friends and family if you don’t have any more space for plants. 

You might also propagate your Bunny Ears Cactus out of necessity if you notice that it’s starting to wilt and die. We are always strong advocates of trying to figure out the issue and fixing it, but if nothing seems to change and your Bunny Ears Cactus is unfortunately still dying, then propagating it might be the best option. You need to be sure that the pads you are propagating on your Bunny Ears Cactus are still healthy. Plant cuttings are much more sensitive to disease or bacteria so the issue will get worse and probably kill your cutting pretty quickly.

What are the different methods you can use to propagate a Bunny Ears Cactus?

There is one main method to propagate Bunny Ears Cacti which does make it easy for plant parents who can’t decide which is the right method for them and their plant. Bunny Ears Cacti grow new pads as they mature. They often come in pairs (hence the name) but can be removed individually and grown as new plants. 

This method of removing pads does mean that your Bunny Ears Cactus does need to be somewhat mature enough to have pads that you don’t mind removing. If your plant is still quite small and only has a few pads, then maybe wait a year or so before propagating. 

We will go over the pad cutting method in detail below to help your Bunny Ears Cactus propagation be a success!

What tools/equipment will I need to propagate my Bunny Ears Cactus?

It’s important that you have all the right things to propagate your Bunny Ears Cactus before you take off the first pad cutting.

 

  • Healthy and mature Bunny Ears Cactus

  • Gardening gloves

  • Sharp scissors/shears/tweezers

  • Spare pot(s)

  • Fresh soil and water

  • Newspaper or plastic sheet if you’re propagating indoors

How to propagate a Bunny Ears Cactus using leaf pad cuttings

Luckily for Bunny Ears Cacti parents across the world, the method using pad cuttings is pretty successful and also pretty simple to do once you know what the steps are.

 

  • 1

    Locate a healthy Bunny Ears Cactus pad

    Bunny Ears Cacti grow new pads as they mature. Each of these can be propagated to create a new mother plant. When taking a pad cutting you want to make sure that the part of the plant you are propagating is healthy to give you any chance of success. Avoid any sign of disease, leaf rot or pests as these problems be transferred onto your new cuttings and amplified. 

    You can try to propagate pads that have naturally fallen off but you will have more success cutting leaves from the plant as chances are they will be healthier.

  • 2

    Make the cut  *Make sure to wear gloves for this part!

    We like to use tweezers to pull off a pad from the mother plant. You can also use shears and scissors to remove the pads. Make sure your tools are clean to avoid passing on any bad bacteria to your cutting. To increase your chances of a successful propagation we recommend cutting off several pads and propagating them at the same time.

  • 3

    Place your cuttings in potting mix

    After a few days, grab a spare pot and fill it with fresh high-quality potting mix. Use a cactus/succulent specific potting mix as this will include ingredients such as perlite which helps with drainage and aeration. This is key for Bunny Ears Cacti as they are sensitive to leaf and root rot caused by soggy soil.

    Whilst wearing gardening gloves, place the bottom of the pad into the potting mix so that about one-third of the pad is covered. This will help stabilise the pad and encourage the roots to grow.

  • 4

    Occasionally water your leaves 

    Bunny Ears Cacti don’t need much water so keep an eye on the moisture levels in the soil and water accordingly. You will want to water it slightly more than your mother plant as this will encourage root growth. It’s all about the right balance to avoid the pad becoming too soggy and rotting.

  • 5

    Be patient 

    Now all there is left to do is wait and occasionally add water and check in on your Bunny Ears Cactus pad cuttings. It will take several weeks or even months for roots to start to grow. The most important thing is that you don’t try and check root growth every few days by pulling the cutting out to inspect it. This can damage the cutting and stop any future growth.

  • 6

    Enjoy your new Bunny Ears Cacti

    It will take a while for you to see anything happening above the surface but as long as the pad cuttings still look healthy this is a good sign that your propagation has been a success. You’ll soon start to see some new leaves growing out from the top of the pads and before you know it you’ll have plenty of mature Bunny Ears Cacti! Continue to care for them as you would the mother plant. 

Bunny Ears Cacti Propagation FAQs

Propagating Bunny Ears Cacti can be a little scary as you are removing entire pads from your mother plant. However, with the right methods and knowledge, your propagation should be a success. Below you can find all of the answers to your propagation questions!

Common problems when propagating a Bunny Ears Cactus

Propagating Bunny Ears Cacti can sometimes be a bit tricky as you are propagating individual pads which need to grow a whole new root system. But don’t think that if you encounter an issue along the way that your propagation is doomed. If you spot the issues early and know how to fix them, most of the time you’ll be able to bring your cutting back to full health.

That’s everything there is to know about propagating a Bunny Ears Cactus! Each process will be a little bit different as factors such as plant maturity, pad size, sunlight and water schedules will impact how your cuttings grow but with the right care, attention and environment your cuttings should grow into happy and healthy plants in no time. Trust us when we tell you that any stress is worth it in the end as these plants are incredible to see grow.

Check out our full Bunny Ears Cactus care guide to find all the information on how to continue to care for your cuttings once they have matured.

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