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Blast resistance



Any tool




Yes (64)



Catches fire from lava




Data value

dec: 81 hex: 51 bin: 1010001

Namespaced ID


Tom Stone Mojang avatar.png

What do you reckon is the most embarrassing way to die in Minecraft? Hugging a Creeper you mistook for a loved one? Skinny dipping in a pool of lava? For us, it's the idea of the humble cactus block getting the finishing blow. When you touch their spiky skin, they only deal a half heart of damage at a time. That means you'd have to fall on a cactus block twenty times to perish to their prickles. Oh, the shame...

Tom Stone[1]

A cactus is a plant block that generates naturally in dry areas.

Natural generation[edit]

Cacti naturally occur in desert and badlands biomes(twice more common in desert than in badlands). They generate as one (1118 chance), two (518 chance), or three (218 chance) blocks tall. Rarely taller cacti can be found if generation chooses to generate another on top of one already generated (although not as commonly as sugar cane).

A potted cactus can also be found in an igloo with a basement. Potted cacti and 3 block cactus also found in some desert village buildings.


A cactus can be mined by hand without taking damage. The tool used to mine the cactus does not affect mining speed.

Block Cactus
Hardness 0.4
Breaking time
Hand 0.65

When the spot a cactus is placed in becomes unsuitable, such as when a solid block is placed next to it or its supporting block is removed, the cactus block uproots and drops as an item.

A cactus also removes and drops itself as an item, if a piston tries to push it (trying to pull it does nothing) or moves a block into its space.

Using a sign on the side of a cactus causes both the sign and the cactus to drop as items.

Chest loot[edit]

Cactus can be found in 80.6% of desert village house chests in stacks of 1–4.

In Bedrock Edition they can be found in 50.0% of bonus chests in stacks of 1–2.


Cacti naturally grow to a height of three blocks, adding a block of height when the top cactus block has received 16 random ticks (i.e. on average every 18 minutes, but the actual rate can vary widely). Bone meal does not work on cacti to speed its growth. A cactus does not need light to grow and is non-flammable. If a cactus has space directly above it, it grows even if the newly-grown block would immediately break due to adjacent blocks.


Wandering traders sell cactus for three emeralds.


A cactus block may be placed only on sand or another cactus block. A cactus breaks itself (and drops as an item) if any block with a solid material, or lava, occupies any of the 4 horizontally adjacent blocks. It also breaks if on sand and the block above is water or lava. In the Legacy Console Edition, a cactus also breaks if a bed is placed next to it.

When any entity, including players and mobs, touches a cactus, 1♥ damage is taken every 0.5 seconds. Damage from touching a cactus is reduced by armor, but touching it also damages the armor. Mobs do not avoid cacti when they pathfind.

Cacti destroy any items that come into contact with them, including cactus blocks harvested above them.

When a minecart hits a cactus block, the minecart drops as an item and is often destroyed, although a hopper can pick it up faster.

A cactus can also be placed in a flower pot, where it is rendered harmless.

A cactus (excluding its spines) is 78 of a block in width (the same as chests) and a full block in height, however the collision box is 1516 of a block high.

Smelting ingredient[edit]

Cooking a cactus in a furnace results in green dye, giving 1 point of experience for each cactus item cooked.

Name Ingredients Smelting recipe
Green Dye Cactus +
Any fuel

This recipe awards 1 experience in Java Edition and 0.2 in Bedrock Edition.


Placing a cactus into a composter has a 50% chance of raising the compost level by 1.

Data values[edit]

Block data[edit]

In Bedrock Edition, cacti use the following data values:

Value Meaning
0 Freshly planted cactus.
1 to 15 The data value is incremented at random intervals.
When it becomes 15, a new cactus block is created on top as long as the total height does not exceed 3.

Block states[edit]

Java Edition:

Name Default value Allowed values Description
A freshly-planted cactus – and a cactus which has just grown cactus above it – each have an age of 0.
The age is incremented at random intervals.
At age 15, a cactus may try to grow more cactus above it.


This page would benefit from the addition of more images.
Please remove this notice once you've added suitable images to the article. The specific instructions are: 0.4.0 Pocket Edition texture ("Cacti now appear 3D in the inventory and when dropped.")
Java Edition Alpha
v1.0.6Cactus Revision 1.png The cactus has now been added to the game.
Cactus (item) Revision 1.png The cactus inventory texture has a glitched top.
Players are hurt 7♥♥♥♥ while breaking them.
The cactus is a full block and acts identically to any one.
v1.0.7Players are now hurt 1♥ while breaking them.
v1.0.11Cacti can now be placed only on sand, and now have the requirement that the space around it has to be empty. Previously, cacti could be placed to form a damaging floor: both players and mobs would take half a heart of damage when they walk on a cactus block. This made it useful for traps, such as a hallway with a cactus block floor that would kill all mobs that walked on it.
Collecting cacti no longer hurts the player.
Cactus Revision 2.png The model and texture have now been updated to have spines around the block.
Java Edition Beta
1.2Cactus can now be smelted, giving cactus green.
1.8Pre-releaseWhen dropped onto the world, the cactus item is now no longer slightly larger than most other blocks, despite the fact that they are visibly smaller when placed. This is because it uses the larger 'item' size, rather than the 'block' size.
Java Edition
1.915w49aCacti now break if adjacent to lava, or if on sand and the block above is water or lava.
1.1317w47aPrior to The Flattening, this block's numeral ID was 81.
1.1418w43aCactus TextureUpdate Revision 1.png The texture of cacti has now been changed.
18w44aCactus.png The texture of cacti has now been changed, once again.
19w03aPlacing a cactus into the new composter has a 20% chance of raising the compost level by 1.
19w05aCacti now has a 50% chance of increasing the compost level in a composter by 1.
Pocket Edition Alpha
0.1.3Cactus Revision 2.png Added cacti.
0.2.0 Cacti are now available in the creative mode inventory.
0.4.0Cacti now appear 3D in the inventory and when dropped.
Cacti now obey regular placement exceptions when being placed underwater or on snow.
0.5.0Cacti are now available from the nether reactor.
0.12.1build 1Cacti are now no longer available from the nether reactor.
?Cactus BE.png The spines behind cacti now render regardless of where viewed from. This may have happened after 1.0.
Pocket Edition
1.0.0alpha cacti now generate in the basements of igloos.
Bedrock Edition
1.2.0beta are now found inside bonus chests.
1.10.0beta The texture of cacti has now been changed.
A 3 block tall cactus and potted cactus will now generate in new desert village house.
Cacti can now be bought from wandering traders.
1.11.0beta can now be found desert village house chests.
Cactus can now be used to fill composters.
Legacy Console Edition
TU1CU11.0Patch 1Cactus Revision 2.png Added cacti.
PlayStation 4 Edition
1.90Cactus.png The texture of cacti has now been changed.
New Nintendo 3DS Edition
0.1.0Cactus Revision 2.png Added cacti.


Issues relating to "Cactus" or "Cacti" are maintained on the bug tracker. Report issues there.


  • The bottom of a cactus block does not deal damage to mobs. In Bedrock and Legacy Console editions, the top of a cactus also does not deal damage.[2][3]
  • Cacti can be placed underwater, provided they are placed on sand, and they grow if they break the surface.
  • Cacti can be placed next to saplings, but the cactus breaks when the tree grows.
  • Endermen can move and place cacti. Thus, they can increase the cactus population in deserts by moving cactus blocks as they grow.
  • Signs can be placed on top of cacti.
  • It is possible for cacti to generate on blocks other than sand due to terrain generation; refer to the gallery for examples.
  • Cactus can be used in the desert to see if the player is in a newly generated area. If most of the cacti around the player is only one block high, then it is most likely new land.
  • Dying from touching a cactus displays "[playername] was pricked to death" in the chat messages.
  • It is possible to place blocks on top of a cactus.
  • It is possible to place redstone next to a cactus block and the block won't be destroyed.
  • By placing more cactus blocks on top of a cactus, it is possible to create an arbitrarily tall cactus. However, it does not grow naturally.
  • Chorus flowers, a fully solid block, can be placed next to cacti without it breaking.


Odd generation[edit]



  1. "Block of the Week: Cactus" –
  2. MCPE-14303
  3. MCCE-9709, resolved as "Works as Intended".