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How to grow & Identify the San Pedro cactus from seeds (also Peyote)Step by Step

Written by Dr. Shaun Murphy

Hey everyone, Welcome to farmingocean.com. In this article, I show you how to easily grow the San Pedro cactus from seeds.

When I say easily I mean this is a quick and easy method, it does not involve sterilizing the soil.

Obviously sterilizing the soil is better, but if you just bought like 20 seeds and you want something uncomplicated quick and easy then this is partly the best method for you.

  • Obviously some potting soil and what you like to do you like to run your fingers through it and remove any woodchips or wood bit from it.
  • We’ll be needing a container like for instance. a plastic container.
  • We’ll be adding some perlite to it, mix the two together, and add some water, bottled water, and not tap water.
  • On top of that, we will put of course the seeds.
  • lastly, we’ll wrap up the whole thing in some cling film let’s call it like this in the UK and I think in the state is called saran wrap.

Some Basic Information About San Pedro cactus

  • like I mentioned this is a quick and easy method that does not involve sterilizing the soil.
  • Sterilizing the soil is better, as you may encounter fewer problems later on, and you can keep the container and closed for much longer, which means you won’t have to water for a long time and you are less likely to get pests like fungus nuts
  • But this is a quick and easy version, which is also the most popular.
  • This version without sterilizing is fine, as long as you give the cacti the best condition and most importantly that you check on the babies on a daily basis.
  • Even if you are just looking at them 10 seconds a day you’ll be able to spot any problem in its early stage.
  • The seeds need a very humid climate in order to germinate.
  • Then once they are born seedlings will need a progressive transition towards a much drier climate
  • I will show you how to do that also you can start seeds at any moment of the year not just Springs.
How to grow the San Pedro cactus from seeds

What will be needed here to grow the San Pedro cactus from seeds?

  • Regular potting soil (preferably with that coconut fiber and preferably with that fertilizer, you will find that information written on the back)
  • perlite (or cause river sand)
  • You can buy perlite at garden stores or Canobiesupply stores
  • If you don’t have paralyzed, you can replace it with coarse sand (the course is the better) but it’s gotta be reverse and not Sun from the sea which has way too much salt in it. even after you washed it.
  • Drinking water so that we can wet the soil. It’s important that you use praying water or mineral water as it does not contain chloride which would harm the baby cacti.
  • a plastic container. now you don’t have to pay for one, in this case, I reuse the flimsy plastic tray that contains Tomatoes from the supermarket this is the perfect size for 10 20 or 25.
  • Seeds you could even fit 50 seeds in these but the plants would be a bit squeezed.
  • it’s also about 7.5 centimeters tall which is perfect.
  • This is going to be the soil level, just over one inch it has room for the cacti to grow even with a lid on you want a container preferably over 5 centimeters tall or 2 inches tall.
  • You may want to peel some holes at the bottom so that the excess of water can be drained (too much water studying for too long could make the roots rot)
  • On a container like this one you could make holes with a lit cigarette or if you use thicker plastic, with a drill.
  • Make the holes about the diameter of a cigarette for good drainage and put quite a few of them like 9 on this container.
  • A roll of cling film that’s how it’s called in the UK and it’s called saran wrap, in the u.s. We will wrap up the container and is to create a humid tropical climate inside.

Process of how to plant San Padro Cactus:

  • It’s going to be one part soil to one part perlite fifty-fifty.
  • First I put the perlite, and I wet it. I like to wet it first to avoid breathing perlite dust which is not good for you. Then add the soil and mix it.
  • Some people will tell you you need to also incorporate coarse and fine Sun and gravel into the mix, you can do that if you want but that’s not necessary.
  • 50%regular potting soil and 50 percent perlite is all you need for the first year associate seedlings.
  • Then, later on, you can put them in individual pots using the same kind of mix but with less perlite like about 30%.
  • Instead of mixing your own soil, you can also use storebought ready-made cactus soil.
  • They will walk alright but keep in mind that my mix of 50 percent soil- 50 percent perlite is better for germinating.
  • You then have to add bottled water at room temperature until the soil is a bit wet but not soaking wet
  • Squeeze some soil in your hand: if youcan squeeze at the water, then it’s toowet just a few drops falling is okay.
  • Place the seeds on top of the soil (do not bury them) and then miss them with some water. Always bottled water not tap water.
  • Grab some cling film or saran wraparound the container so that the climateinside it remains humid.
How to grow the San Pedro cactus from seeds

How to take care of San Pedro Cactus that Container?

  • The Container must be placed in a spot full of light but without any direct Sun
  • It can be in the Sun, If covered by a rag to filter the Rays, but be careful this does not raise the temperature of the salt too much, because with high temperatures come problems.

Temperature for germination of San pedro cactus

  • Daytime temperatures for germinating should be between 20 and 30 degrees Celsius and Fahrenheit between 68 and 86 degrees
  • The ideal temperature being 23 degrees which is 74 degrees Fahrenheit.
  • If you have not sterilized the soil then try to keep the temperature on the lower round of the spectrum because white mold and other kinds of problems appear more easily with heat.
  • In the winter the room temperature may not reach 23 degrees Celsius or 74degrees Fahrenheit.
  • In which case you can move the tray closer to a heater, and monitor a temperature with the thermometer.
  • Maybe you have a heating mat made for seedlings, you can use that but make sure the temperature of the soul remains around 23 degrees Celsius or 74Fahrenheit.
  • This temperature only has to be reached during the daytime you can let it drop lower at nighttime.

Remember that germinating of San Pedro cactus depends on three things

  1. The wetness of the soil (a bit wet but not too much)
  2. The amount of light (plenty of light but no direct sun)
  3. The right temperature
How to grow the San Pedro cactus from seeds

When seedling will appears then what to do?

  • The seedling should appear about 10 days after sowing them. if they do not come up, then you probably didn’t wet the soil enough.
  • Providing you both quality seeds that are fresh we’ll assume your seeds are still dormant.
  • They may finally germinate once the sole is fully dry for the first time and then gets his first watering, in a few weeks.
  • Seeds need a dry-wet cycle in order to trigger the germination process.
  • If they didna come up at the beginning then they will probably come up at the next dry wet cycle after the cling film or the saranwrap has been removed.
  • Take a look at the plants preferably on a daily basis to make sure everything is okay.
  • If white mold appears (looking a bit like a spider web) then you need to remove the paths that have been contaminated and hope it doesn’t spread.
  • Search immediately for advice on the net you could lose all plants in a matter of hours or days.
  • The cause of that afternoon wash seeds that carry contaminants.
  • If the plants are getting red they have too much Sun, you have to decrease the light exposure.
  • If the plants are rotting then you probably have the soil too wet you will have to start opening the lid earlier than planned so that the humidity reduces.
  • We use you may remember the earlier in the article I mentioned that the seeds must be started with a very humid climate.

How to maintain a humid climate in a container of San Pedro cactus?

  • When you pair some holes in the film with a pen. first just one hole at one corner another one at the opposite corner.
  • Then about four days later make it five holes in total.
  • Then under the four days later punch about ten more holes, spreading them evenly.
  • Four days later till the holes larger with your finger.
  • Then another four days later take it off completely.
  • When I say four days it can be three or five this is just an indication.
  • While you progressively punch holes in the lead make sure the soil does not dry out completely.
  • If it does then try spraying some water through the holes, very young see the link do not tolerate dry salt for very long.

When should you start punching holes?

  • Well, that is a tough one to answer if you start just a few days after the cacti have germinated when they are still very tiny you will have less probability of getting mold but you have to check on a daily basis that the soil is not dry.
  • If on the other end you leave them all enclosed up, you may end up with problems due to the enclosed wet environment.
  • Leaving the container closed for long is fine with sterilized soil but riskier with unsterilized soil.
  • Personally, I would prefer to start punching holes not too long after the cacti have come up, and then I make sure that the sole does not dry out until they have built some strengths.

How to Watering San Pedro Cactus?

  • You have to water them very gently at the beginning because the pressure from the water can easily make them tip over.
  • So if they are very young starting with misting may be a better idea than using a watering can.
  • When you water them, you have to give them a generous amount of water, until water starts coming out of the draining holes
  • You should water them as soon as the soil is dry but do not leave them for more than a couple of days with a saltily dry!
  • If you are going away for a few days then I suggest giving them water just before you leave.
  • When the plants about two months old you can start letting the soil fully dry for a day or two between each watering.
  • Cacti actually like dry-wet cycles.
  • When they are older they will become more and more tolerant to lack of water.
  • If you are growing beauties keep in mind you may want to give them water less often, then trigger series cacti like the San Pedro.
  • If you start to see a lot of small flies around the container, it’s likely to be “fungus gnats” whose larvae will eat the roots of your cacti (the seedlings will fall flat . without any root).
  • They feast on the youngest seedlings as they have the most tender roots.
  • After about a year, it will be time for you to be planted seedlings at least those that have survived in individual pots.
san pedro cactus farmingocean.jpg

Some Essential Information San Pedro cactus:

Can you eat San Pedro cactus fruit?

  • The San Pedro can be eaten fresh as well as dried, preferably on an empty stomach. You start by cutting the thorns of the cactus and peeling it thinly (not too thick, because most active ingredients are located just under the skin).

Besides, is San Pedro cactus edible?

  • The San Pedro cactus, also known as Trichocereus pachanoi, is a fast-growing cactus that grows in Peru and Ecuador, where it has been used in rituals for 3000 years. The cacti are usually dried and cut into edible ‘buttons’ that are eaten to induce a trip similar to LSD.
  • Likewise, are all San Pedro cactus hallucinogenic? San Pedro (Echinopsis pachanoi) is a cactus native to the Andean slopes of Ecuador and Peru. It is the South American cousin to peyote, and most notably contains the psychoactive alkaloid known as mescaline.
  • In recent years, there has seen an explosion of interest in Ayahuasca and, to a lesser extent, San Pedro.

How do you identify a San Pedro cactus?

  • Count the ribs or columns that run vertically along with the cactus. A San Pedro cactus has a total of 6 to 8 rounded ribs or columns with small spikes on top to keep away predators.
  • Observe its flowers, which bloom during the nighttime hours when it is cooler. San Pedro cacti grow white blooms, usually in July.


  • Growing cacti from seed is not that difficult but it requires checking them on a daily basis.
  • If you don’t think you are able to do that, then I would suggest buying seedlings that are already a year old you will save yourself all the work.

Thank you.

About the author

Dr. Shaun Murphy