HELP: What happened to my mini cactus?
Do you know what happened here? The last pic shows a similar (although not the same) looking cactus I have to show you what it used to look like. Did it die for sure? What could have caused it? Thank you!
The north west of south east Wales
All cacti are succulents but not all succulents are cacti
Your plant is/was some kind of echeveria by the looks of it. The cause of death looks like classic signs of stem rot caused by over watering. Exposure to cold can cause the same effect in some plants though. Can you give more details of how long you've had the plant and how you look after it?
Unlike the brain, the stomach warns you when it's empty.
edited February 2020
The most likely reason is the soil being too damp. Echeverias need the soil to be kept on the dry side and almost no watering is needed over the winter months. Unfortunately, it's too late for that plant but if you get another or propagate one from a leaf (which is easy), use a very gritty compost and make sure the pot has drainage holes so it is never standing in water.
There's some advice in the How To section:
A trowel in the hand is worth a thousand lost under a bush.
Yes, succulents. Thank you for the correction. I've had the plant for about 4 months. Bought it in November. Watered it once--I believe sometime late December/early January. I wondered about over-watering or low temperature, but the soil does not look damp and it has been a while since I watered it. As for low temperature, I'm in Massachusetts (and new in the area, used to live where it was much warmer) and although I don't keep the heater on while I'm away, the temperature has never gone close to freezing indoors.
Any suggestions on how to keep this alive once I get a new one?
Vendée, Western France
They are cold sensitive and won't like anything below 6 or 7C. They need plenty of light and good drainage.
"We don't stop playing because we grow old; we grow old because we stop playing." - George Bernard Shaw