Asked on Oct 3, 2017

How can I make my Christmas cactus to bloom?

Jane Johnson FreitagAngie WaldnerA Crafty Mix - Michelle
+14

Answered

it's about 60 years old. It used to bloom a couple of times a year. I moved it to a different house about 5 years ago and it hasn't bloomed since. I set it outside in the summertime and bring it in when temperatures at night start dropping into the 40s. I've tried putting it in a dark room, cod liver oil, coffee grounds, and any number of other remedies but nothing seems to work.
q how can i make my christmas cactus to bloom
q how can i make my christmas cactus to bloom
12 answers
  • Lisa S.
    on Oct 3, 2017

    Sun and Miracle grow. Move it to a sunnier window.
    • She11454811
      on Oct 3, 2017

      Thanks for the suggestions. I have been using Peter's houseplant fertilizer about every 6 months. I put it outside about the time in the Spring when the nighttime temperatures in Wisconsin are more than 50 degrees. It gets about an hour of afternoon sun every day throughout the summer. Maybe I'll try the Miracle Grow and see if that makes a difference.
  • Cheryl Hurst
    on Oct 3, 2017

    Repot it at least every two years. When the pot is full, it needs a larger one. Don't want to go larger, divide the plant into two or three smaller ones and repot in cactus soil made for succulents. Use a little drainage gravel (small) on the bottom, be sure the drainage holes are not clogged and do not water often. Once every couple weeks is fine. Place near indirect light and you should be buds in its season. Note, not all Christmas cactus are actually christmas time bloomers. Some bloom at Thanksgiving; some bloom twice a year if its conditions are right. If you cacti begin to drop leaf segments, or wilt, it is not getting enough water.
    • She11454811
      on Oct 3, 2017

      Good suggestions. I will try re-potting her. (I call her Dena, after the lady that had her originally.) I remember her blooming twice a year. My Mom had her when she was alive. She had an Easter Lily that she was able to nurture enough so it bloomed at Christmas one year and Dena bloomed at Easter that year. What fun that was1
  • Cheryl Hurst
    on Oct 3, 2017

    Please forgive my typos
    • She11454811
      on Oct 3, 2017

      You must be human, too. We make mistakes. By the way, I tried different watering schedules. All the way down to once a month. Did seem to matter. But I might try that again. She's gotten quite a lot of rainwater this year, we had a rainy summer. I have good drainage in her pot, though.
  • Donaschu
    on Oct 4, 2017

    I put mine outside until its going to freeze. The more cold it gets, the more buds it sets. I barely have mine in the house and the buds form.
    • She11454811
      on Oct 4, 2017

      The temperature has been up and down this Fall in Wisconsin, but, I think I'll try to do as you suggest...wait until close to frost. I wonder if it would tolerate being covered with a cloth when the first frost shows up?
  • Wbc431826
    on Oct 4, 2017

    Fertilize with cactus formula on Valentine’s Day and Hallowe’en. Make sure it touches no paint, that really affects flowering pattern.

  • Dianacirce70
    on Oct 4, 2017

    I have read to put it in a darker room about October to November, for a few days. That should entice it to bloom.
  • Fauxgal
    on Oct 4, 2017

    If this one is yours, it is too jammed in there. I would separate them next Spring. That does two things, it gives them new soil, and it gives them growing room. I don't bring mine in until the week before Thanksgiving (I have a Thanksgiving cactus, not a Christmas cactus.) Then they bloom the entire week of Thanksgiving.
  • Cheryl
    on Oct 4, 2017

    Is there any way to soften dirt that have plants in them?
  • Donaschu
    on Oct 5, 2017

    I have never done that, don't know why --I cover other things. Usually I have my plant room clean and it comes in.
  • A Crafty Mix - Michelle
    on Oct 5, 2017

    Shame, she seems to be a bit pot bound. Move her to a slightly bigger pot and add a humus-rich, porous mixture that holds some moisture and drains quickly. The soil should preferably be coarse and slightly acidic. You can also add small bits of crushed charcoal to the mix to help with aeration. Don't make the pot to much bigger than the one she's in at the moment. They like to be slightly root bound. Kinda like being wrapped in a warm cozy blanket
  • Angie Waldner
    on Oct 5, 2017

    I think the cold thing is good .,but When I bring the ones I have in side I mix up some VF 11 You Can get it at Amazon Or look for it at Fred Meyer or Kroger stores in the guarding section. Just follow the directions on the bottle. then give it to the plant. If you can change your planting mix you have it in it may be to old.
  • Jane Johnson Freitag
    on Oct 5, 2017

    Mine has been outside all summer and now that's it has cooled off in Central IL it is getting ready to bloom.
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