Where Does Cactus Grow

Cacti are unique desert plants that can survive in some of the harshest conditions on Earth.

The regions where cacti thrive are generally arid and hot climates, such as deserts and semi-desert areas, and coastal regions with little rainfall. They are adapted to these dry conditions by having modified leaves, which absorb moisture from dew, fog, and passing rainstorms, and deep taproots, which store moisture during periods of drought. And spines to protect them from predators.

They can also be found in other habitats, including arid grasslands, sand dunes, rocky hillsides, and savannahs. Most cacti prefer bright sunlight and can tolerate temperatures just above freezing at night.

Their omnivorous nutritional requirements mean they live alongside beetles, lizards, mammals, and birds that feed on their fruit or nectar.

Cactus plants range in size from tiny varieties barely taller than an ant to giant forms as tall as a tree. The variety in form and size means cacti may be perennials or ephemerals struggling for survival among more vigorous growth of other plants within the same habitat.

These variable conditions necessitate specific adaptation to guarantee their survival by storing water close to their surface, relying on fog for hydration, or growing deep roots to find rare groundwater sources. All make a living in some of Earth’s most extreme environments possible for these remarkable members of the plant kingdom.

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