In my current world, I built a horizontal tunnel from my home to the nearest demon altar, at a depth of 8 feet above sea level. As it happens, this tunnel passed through a relatively large area of sand and, while making a run down this tunnel last night, I discovered that cacti had grown in it, contrary to my assumption that they would only grow on the surface deserts.

I've checked both wikis and found no information on cactus farming. Are the requirements for growing cacti (altitude, vertical space, and perhaps quantity of sand in the area) currently known? For now, I've dug six blocks down from the main tunnel and paved at the original level, which looks like it should leave a cactus-height space above the new level of the sand surface, but I haven't seen any new cactus growth yet.


2 Answers 2


The wiki now lists the following requirements for Cacti to grow:

  • The target Sand Block is above 0 ft and is not actuated or sloped in any way.
  • The target block is more than 378 tiles away from the lateral edges of the world, i.e. not in the zone where the Ocean biome is usually located.
  • The tiles above and to both sides of the target Sand Block (only the directly adjacent ones) are open space.
  • The tile above the target block is not filled with any liquid.
  • There are fewer than 4 Cactus tiles and more than 10 Sand Blocks (or Ebon-, Crim-, or Pearlsand Blocks; all variants are added together) within a 13×5-tile rectangle centered on the tile above the target Sand Block.

You can't plant cactus but all it needs is sand.

Here is a bit of an instructional vid from Youtube.

  • The video half-answers quantity of sand (one block deep and it implies that there's no requirement for a certain number of blocks in an area), but does not address the amount of vertical space required. Commented Aug 31, 2011 at 7:47

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