Mammillaria plumosa

feather cactus
Unique cactus looks like puffy white ball, covered in ‘feathers’. A cactus you can pet! Small white flowers in spring. Clumping. Great in pots. Protect from winter rains.
height 4–6
width 3–8in
tolerates Cold, Drought, Heat, Pots, Wind
Mammillaria are from the deserts of the world and as such like to go totally bone dry between waterings, making them very low-maintenance. If you see your cactus begin to shrivel or lose firmness, your cactus is likely totally dry and should be watered. To get good healthy growth your plant doesn’t want to sit around totally dried out during it’s growing season. Once it is dry, water it.

This cactus comes from an area with summer rainfall and is actively growing during that time, when it is forgiving of overwatering errors. During winter dormancy it should be kept extra dry and won’t tolerate overwatering.

Remember that if kept in a small pot your plant will want more frequent watering.
exposure Part Shade – Full Sun
drainage In Ground: Cactus Mix, In Pots: Cactus Mix
fertilizing All Purpose
origin NE Mexico

Outdoor Exposure Guide


Full Sun
Six or more hours of sun beams directly landing on the plant's leaves.

Part Shade
Three to five hours of sun beams directly landing on the plant's leaves.

Part Sun
One to two hours of sun beams directly landing on the plants leaves.

Full Shade
The plant is never fully lit by sun beams, but is in a bright spot or has dappled sunbeams playing over the leaves throughout the day.

Deep Shade
The plant never has dappled light on the leaves, and is in a place that feels dim, even on a nice sunny day.

Growing Notes

While your cactus is out of the nursery can, but before it is planted, is the easiest time to weed. Be sure to pull weeds early, as once they are established they can be difficult to remove. Forceps can be helpful for this task.
This plants hardiness rating assumes a dry winter and it does not respond to even moderately cold weather with wet feet.