Cacti are among the most resilient plants on the planet, a trait that has made it possible for them to survive in the harshest of climates around the world. But beyond their rough outward appearances they pack a lot of benefits and surprises that many do not know about. Here are some interesting Cactus facts that will blow your mind.

  • The size of a cactus depends on the species. They might all belong to the same family and grow in the same locale but when it comes to the size each cactus grows according to its species. The largest ones have been known to reach the dizzying heights of 66 feet while the small ones can manage a few inches only.
  • Cacti have the most diverse of shapes of all plants known to man. Some grow shaped like normal trees with trunks and branches, others are cylindrical, others irregularly shaped, and others have a starfish shape while others are flat surfaced.
  • Spines are the cacti equivalent of leaves. This is for the benefit of the plant so that it does not lose water since it grows in arid areas. The spines can be soft or hard depending on the species and can grow to a length of up to 6 inches. The spines also double up as security for the plant by keeping animals at bay.
  • Cacti store a lot of water in their fleshy trunks for use in periods of drought. The water stored in cacti has a higher density than the normal tap water but it is safe to drink.
  • Some members of the cacti family produce a hallucinogenic substance called mescaline, which has been used by ancient people to induce trans-like states during meditation.
  • Cacti have a very long lifespan with some known to live for up to 300 years.

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