Cactus and Tender Succulents forum: Help identifying cactus discolouration

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South West England
May 5, 2017 11:49 AM CST
This is my oldest cactus, I believe it's about 15 years old. Up until a couple of months ago it was solid green with yellow spines all over but then I noticed it was starting to go a bit yellow in the middle.
I had a look at the roots but they didn't look pot-bound or unhealthy in anyway, so I just changed the soil and gave it a new pot. Since then the yellow has spread and in some places it's even brown or grey. Nothing is mushy and the spines are all still solidly in place.
I suspicion it may be heat damage (it was in my conservatory) but does anyone have any better guesses? Or any idea what I can do for it?
Thumb of 2017-05-05/Caroline1805/989384 Thumb of 2017-05-05/Caroline1805/8da32b Thumb of 2017-05-05/Caroline1805/5b01af Thumb of 2017-05-05/Caroline1805/48ba98
Georgia (Zone 8a)
Region: Georgia Enjoys or suffers hot summers Dog Lover Houseplants Cactus and Succulents Annuals
Foliage Fan Birds Critters Allowed Hummingbirder Butterflies Bee Lover
May 5, 2017 2:38 PM CST
I'm sorry, but he looks dead to me.
Name: Daisy I
Reno, Nv (Zone 6b)
Not all who wander are lost
Garden Sages Plant Identifier
May 5, 2017 3:53 PM CST
Sad Looks dead to me too.
Life is not a journey to the grave with the intention of arriving safely in a pretty and well preserved body, but rather to skid in broadside, thoroughly used up, totally worn out, and proclaiming...."WOW What a Ride!!" -Mark Frost

Name: Thijs van Soest
Mesa, AZ (Zone 9b)
Lover of wildlife (Raccoon badge) Lover of wildlife (Black bear badge) Bee Lover Bookworm Adeniums Enjoys or suffers hot summers
Cactus and Succulents Container Gardener Hummingbirder Xeriscape Region: Arizona Region: Southwest Gardening
May 5, 2017 6:33 PM CST
I fear it is done for too, it is not quite all the way right now - I see some green at some of the tips, but that may not matter, whatever it is, it has spread too far. I am not sure where you are, but if that cactus has been grown inside for its entire live it might simply be an issue of that is all that it had to give in not ideal conditions or it might have attracted a disease, not all of those lead to rotting and squishiness sometimes they just slowly desiccate, and it could simply have been something blown in through an open window or door that hit the plant at the wrong time.

Unless you recently changed its position dramatically it is hard to believe it is heat damage, that kind of dramatic heat damage would probably only occur if you took it from being behind glass all its live outside into bright all day full sun and it would/should stop developing if you removed it from the location where it was incurring that damage.

South West England
May 6, 2017 7:21 AM CST
Thank you for the advice. I am in the UK and am not surprised if it simply reached it's limit. It's just my favourite which I've been growing since I was 13 so was quite attached to it.

We have recently moved house and the room it was in seems to get a lot hotter in the afternoon sun than where it was in our old house. I have many other smaller cacti with no problems at all so it's seems localised to this one. I have now moved it to a cooler room and will leave it to see what happens. But I will try not to get my hopes up Sad .
Name: Ed
Central ,NJ (Zone 6b)
Cactus and Succulents Container Gardener Sempervivums Houseplants Garden Ideas: Level 1
May 7, 2017 6:37 AM CST
If it has any good green left maybe at the tip you could could try planting the good part and see if it grows. Looking at one photo when the window is visible it looks like a window with a pattern on it which may block more light then a plain glass window.
Plants are like that little ray of sunshine on a rainy day.

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