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Cactus JE4.png
Cactus BE4.png



Yes (64)


Any tool

Blast resistance










Catches fire from lava


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



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
Default 0.6

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.

Natural generation[]

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 can also be found in some desert village buildings.

Chest loot[]

Item Structure Container Quantity Chance
Java Edition
Cactus Village Desert house chest 1–4 80.6%
Bedrock Edition
Cactus Bonus chest Chest 1–2 60%
Village Desert house chest 1–4 80.6%


Wandering traders sell a cactus for three emeralds.


A cactus block may be placed only on sand, red 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 the sand and the block above is water or lava.

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.

A cactus destroys any item that come into contact with it, including other cactus in item form. Falling blocks affected by gravity such as sand and gravel are also destroyed when falling onto cactus, but cactus does not destroy falling cactus blocks; instead, the falling cactus transforms into items upon touching a cactus. If cactus is dropped as an item by the player, it can be destroyed.

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 spikes) 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.


Cactus 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 their growth.[1] 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.

Smelting ingredient[]

Ingredients Smelting recipe Description
Cactus +
Any fuel

Ingredients Smelting recipe Description
Cactus +
Any fuel



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


Java Edition:

SoundSubtitlesSourceDescriptionResource locationTranslation keyVolumePitchAttenuation
Block brokenBlocksOnce the block has brokenblock.wool.breaksubtitles.block.generic.break1.00.816
None[sound 1]BlocksFalling on the block with fall damageblock.wool.fallNone[sound 1]0.50.7516
Block breakingBlocksWhile the block is in the process of being brokenblock.wool.hitsubtitles.block.generic.hit0.250.516
Block placedBlocksWhen the block is placedblock.wool.placesubtitles.block.generic.place1.00.816
FootstepsBlocksWalking on the blockblock.wool.stepsubtitles.block.generic.footsteps0.151.016
  1. a b MC-177082

Bedrock Edition:

SoundSourceDescriptionResource locationVolumePitch
?BlocksOnce the block has brokendig.cloth1.00.8
?BlocksFalling on the block with fall damagefall.cloth0.41.0
?BlocksWhile the block is in the process of being brokenhit.cloth0.350.5
?BlocksJumping from the blockjump.cloth0.121.0
?BlocksFalling on the block without fall damageland.cloth0.181.0
?BlocksWalking on the blockstep.cloth0.31.0
?BlocksWhen the block is placeddig.cloth1.00.8

Data values[]


Java Edition:

NameResource locationBlock tags (JE)FormTranslation key
Cactuscactusenderman_holdableBlock & Itemblock.minecraft.cactus

Bedrock Edition:

NameResource locationNumeric ID FormTranslation key
Cactuscactus81Block & Itemtile.cactus.name


See also: Data values

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[]

See also: Block states
Name Default value Allowed values Description
A freshly-planted cactus – and a cactus that 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.


Java Edition Alpha
v1.0.6Cactus JE1.png Added cacti.
Cactus (item) JE1.png The cactus inventory texture has a side texture on top.
Player receives 1♥ damage when punching them, right clicking on them, or making steps on them.
The cactus is a full block and acts identically to any one.
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 JE2 BE1.png The model and texture have been updated to have spines around the block.
v1.0.14Cactus blocks now can grow to a height of three blocks, allowing for farming. Prior to this update, cacti would not grow.
v1.2.0previewCacti now only generates in the new desert biome, instead of anywhere with sand.
Java Edition Beta
1.2Cactus can now be smelted, giving cactus green.
1.8Pre-releaseWhen dropped onto the world, the cactus item is no longer slightly larger than most other blocks, despite the fact that they are visibly smaller when placed, a bug shared with many other items. This is because it used the larger 'item' size, rather than the 'block' size.
Java Edition
1.7.213w36aCacti now generate in the new mesa biomes.
13w39aAdded red sand, which cactus can also grow on.
1.915w43aA potted cactus can now be found in the basement of the newly added igloo.
15w49aCacti 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.
Banners and signs can be placed horizontally adjacent to cactus, immediately breaking the cactus. This action was historically disabled.
1.1418w43aCactus JE3.png The texture of cacti has been changed.
18w44aCactus JE4.png The texture of cacti has been changed, once again.
18w50aPotted cacti can now be found in desert villages.
Cacti items can now be found in chests in desert village houses.
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.
Added wandering traders, which sell cacti.
Pocket Edition Alpha
v0.1.3Cactus JE2 BE1.png Added cacti.
v0.2.0Cactus (inventory) BE1.png Cacti are now available in the creative mode inventory.
v0.4.0Cactus JE2 BE1.png Cacti now appear 3D in the inventory and when dropped; previously they used a completely 2D item texture like many other plants.
Cacti now obey regular placement exceptions when being placed underwater or on snow.
v0.5.0Cacti are now available from the nether reactor.
v0.8.0build 2Cactus BE2.png The top texture of cacti has been changed.
build 4Cactus JE2 BE1.png The top texture of cacti has been reverted.
v0.9.0build 1Cactus BE3.png The model of cacti has been changed. The spines behind cacti now render regardless of where viewed from.
v0.12.1build 1Cacti are no longer available from the nether reactor.
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 BE4.png The texture of cacti has been changed.
A 3 block tall cactus and potted cactus now generates in new desert village houses.
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.
1.16.0beta once again deals damage to mobs and items standing on top of it.
Legacy Console Edition
TU1CU1 1.0 Patch 11.0.1Cactus JE2 BE1.png Added cacti.
PlayStation 4 Edition
1.90Cactus JE4.png The texture of cacti has been changed.
New Nintendo 3DS Edition
0.1.0Cactus JE2 BE1.png Added cacti.


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


  • 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 could 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. Paintings can also be placed on the sides of cacti, creating a nasty trap for anyone that tries to go through paintings.
  • 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.
  • Blocks can be placed on top of a cactus, including other cactus blocks.
  • It is possible to place redstone next to a cactus block without destroying it.
  • A 20 block tall cactus can be found on the seed 43931985876593125 at coordinates (-9711824 , ~ , 7726416) and more recently a 22 block tall one on seed 11343195073417814 at coordinates (14955936 , ~ , -3750655) and even a 23 block tall one on the seed 184693195438010998 and coordinates (16274576 ~ 10230656). All these seeds, found by the Minecraft@home research project, work on Java Edition 1.14.4.[2]
  • A cactus is the only thing in the game that destroys all blocks and items, including nether stars, which are immune to explosions, and all netherite items, which are immune to lava.
    • Thus, cacti can be used as a better disposal bin for trash and other useless items than lava, and it is also safer, considering it deals far less damage than lava does.
  • Top Snow can be placed next to cacti without breaking the cacti, no matter how many Top Snow layers stack.