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Blast resistance



Any tool




Yes (64)




Smelted: 0.2



Data value

dec: 81 hex: 51 bin: 1010001



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 that occurs naturally in dry areas.

Obtaining[edit | edit source]

Cactus can be mined by hand without taking damage. The tool used to mine the cactus does not affect the speed at which it is mined.

Hardness 0.4
Breaking time[note 1]
Hand 0.65
  1. Times are for unenchanted tools in seconds.

When the spot a cactus is placed in becomes unsuitable, such as when a solid block is placed next to them or their supporting block is removed, the cactus block will uproot and will drop as an item.

A cactus will also be removed and drop 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 will cause both the sign and the cactus to drop as items.[Bedrock Edition only]

Natural generation[edit | edit source]

Cacti naturally occur in desert and mesa biomes. 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.

Farming[edit | edit source]

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 will grow even if the newly-grown block will immediately break due to adjacent blocks.

Usage[edit | edit source]

A cactus block may only be placed on sand or another cactus block. A cactus will break itself (and drop as an item) if any block with a solid material, or lava, is in any of the 4 blocks horizontally adjacent. It will also break if on sand and the block above is water or lava.

When any entity, including players and mobs, touches a cactus, 1 (Half Heart.svg) damage is taken every 0.5 seconds. Damage from touching a cactus is reduced by armor, but touching it also damages the armor. Mobs will not avoid cacti when they pathfind, making them good for trap and farm design.

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

When a minecart hits a cactus block, the minecart is dropped as an item - this item is often destroyed as a result, although a hopper will pick it up faster.

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

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 | edit source]

Name Ingredients Smelting recipe
Cactus Green Cactus +
Any fuel

Data values[edit | edit source]

Block data[edit | edit source]

See also: Data values
Bits Values
0x0 Freshly planted cactus.
0x1 to 0x15 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 state[edit | edit source]

See also: Block states
Name Value Description

0–15A 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.

Video[edit | edit source]

History[edit | edit source]

Until Beta 1.8, Cacti were somewhat larger than other blocks when dropped.
In older versions, endermen could place cacti on any block.
1.0.6 The cactus was added to the game. Players were hurt 7 (Heart.svgHeart.svgHeart.svgHalf Heart.svg) while breaking them.
Cactus-Pre Alpha 1.0.11.png The texture was different to what it is now. The cactus was a full block.
1.0.7 Players are now hurt 1 (Half Heart.svg) while breaking them.
1.0.11 Cacti can now only be placed 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 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.png The model and texture were updated to have spines around the block.
1.2 Cactus can now be smelted, giving cactus green.
1.8 When dropped onto the world, the Cactus item is no longer slightly larger than most other blocks despite the fact that they were visibly smaller when placed. This was because it used the larger 'item' size, rather than the 'block' size.
Official release
1.9 15w49a Cactus now breaks if adjacent to lava, or if on sand and the block above is water or lava.
Pocket Edition Alpha
0.1.3 Added cacti.
0.2.0 Cacti is now available in the creative mode inventory.
?No longer appear 2D in the inventory and when dropped.
0.5.0 Cacti are available from the nether reactor.
0.12.1 build 1 Cacti are no longer available from the nether reactor.
Legacy Console Edition
TU1CU11.0Patch 1Added cacti.

Issues[edit | edit source]

Issues relating to “Cactus” or “Cacti“ are maintained on the issue tracker. Report issues there.

Trivia[edit | edit source]

  • The bottom of a cactus block does not damage the player.
  • Cactus can be placed underwater, provided they are placed on sand, and will grow if they break the surface.
  • Cactus can be placed next to saplings, but the cactus will break 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 cactus.
  • It is possible for cacti to generate on blocks other than sand due to generated structures; refer to the gallery for examples.
  • Cactus can be used in the desert to see if you are in a newly generated area. If most of the cacti around you are only one block high, then it is most likely new land.
  • Death to a cactus will display "[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 will not naturally grow.

Gallery[edit | edit source]

Underside[edit | edit source]

Odd generation[edit | edit source]

Heights[edit | edit source]

References[edit | edit source]

External links[edit | edit source]

Promotional Content