What are the secrets of Christmas cacti?

  3 answers
  • Hhh29972726 Hhh29972726 on Dec 29, 2017
    Lots of natural light; allow to dry out between waterings. Feed sparingly with Miracle Gro.

    Like poinsettias, Christmas cacti bloom based on natural light cycles. Equal light and dark (the equinoxes) will trigger the blooming phase which can then last for several weeks - though at my latitude (Southern Canada), rarely all the way till Christmas. If they get the light balance they need they'll produce a second bloom at or around the spring equinox as well.

  • Susan Poste Susan Poste on Dec 29, 2017
    I have quite a few large cacti that bloom beautifully, at least twice/yr. ( Easter, Thanksgiving & Christmas usually)

    This is what they seem to thrive on:
    Water only when the soil is really dry (not before) & just enough to wet through & drain out the bottom of the pots they are sitting in. They don't like to sit in water.
    When they start to show budding, I dampen the soil enough to be able to stick cactus fertilizer spikes in around the plant base & gently water them in. (follow package directions for use).
    I live in Canada where temperatures fluctuate, so I watch carefully when spring arrives, & temperatures stabilize. When the night temperature matches the indoor temperature, I put them outside out of direct sun, watch they don't dry out to the point that the leaves drop off & when fall rolls around, I reverse the process & bring them into the house where they can be watered & fertilized. Of course they receive much love & I'm sure that helps theme thrive as well!
    Should branches fall off (& they do! ) just pop them into water, keep it changed often & they will quickly form roots - voila! new plants to pot up & add to the collection! Easy, Peasy. Hope this helps & you enjoy your cacti, JoAnne!