Best Christmas Cactus Care Tips. I have several holiday cactus including Christmas cactus and the care is the same. I share how I get loads of blooms and healthy plants year round!
My best Christmas cactus care tips. I have included a downloadable check list for easy reference. It is included in the Resource Library. If you are not already a subscriber just fill out the form below to get access to all the handy resources including this check list.
Nothing beats holiday cactus for bright winter blooms in your home. I share how I keep mine healthy for tons of blooms!
1.Plant in a light-weight, free-draining soil, such as a succulent or cactus mix or African violet mix, in a pot with drainage holes. (I prefer Terra Cotta pots and here is why)
2. Water thoroughly and regularly, letting the top inch of soil dry out between watering. Feed during active growing season. Late Winter – Late Summer. The plants I kept outside needed water more often, just like my other potted plants. Do no underwater these plants or let them sit in water.
How do you know when to start feeding again? You will see new bright green growth on them in late winter, that is an indication to start feeding. Use a well balance organic plant food. Balanced means when the NPK numbers read like this, 2-2-2 or 20-20-20. Some recommend Cactus food but since these are not cactus that isn’t the best.
3. Christmas cactus flowers best when slightly pot bound or crowded and doesn’t usually need repotting. (Once every three years at the very most.) If you do repot your cactus, do so when it’s not blooming
4. About Oct. 1 set your Christmas cactus in a room where you never turn the lights on at night. For the flower buds to set, Christmas cacti need 12 – 14 hours of continuous darkness per day. After the flower buds have set, the plants can withstand light at night. Cool night temperatures also encourage bloom but they don’t like it below 50 degrees F.
5. Keeping your Christmas cactus plants in an indirect sun yet bright location indoors is the key to prolonged blooms. During the summer put them outside in a shady spot.
6. Christmas cactus will blossom longer when exposed to only cool temperatures. Big changes in temperature can cause the cactus blossoms to drop before they open. Optimal temp for Christmas cacti is 68-70 degrees F.
7. The Christmas cactus love humidity. These epiphytes (not really a cactus) are tropical plants, they thrive in humid conditions. Mist or place pot on stones with water beneath to create humid environment if you live in dry climate.
Another big bonus, these things can last forever! Well, maybe not forever but taken care of properly then can last decades. I have a friend who has one that is over 50 years old and it is still going strong. Now that is a house plant!
Enjoy your Christmas/Thankgiving cactus!
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