Pot This Plant That / Christmas Cactus

’Twas only a month ago that the holidays were in full swing, and perhaps this delightful seasonal foliage caught your eye. Christmas cacti are so named because they bloom during the most wonderful time of the year, but their care doesn’t stop there. Here, Solana Succulents owner Jeff Moore fills out our tip sheet on the not-so-cactus-like cactus.

 

Green Thumb: Suggested

Don’t let the name fool you: A Christmas cactus acts more like a tropical houseplant than a true desert cactus, and that’s what many owners don’t realize. It’s finicky in that it doesn’t like direct sun and may look a little wilty in summers if it’s too hot.

 

Lighting Requirements

Treat your cactus as you would a houseplant and place it in a spot with bright, indirect sunlight or even on a porch in partial shade—it’ll appreciate a little airflow.

 

Watering Requirements

Water your cactus every time its soil dries out. Weekly is a fine rule of thumb, but be aware of how much light your cactus receives and check the soil to water accordingly.

 

When to Repot

A Christmas cactus can live for years, blooming every holiday season. Of course, it doesn’t love being uprooted, and you should do so only when it’s clearly overgrown its pot, about every three years. Never repot when it’s in full bloom, and always use a cactus succulent mix when you do. Consider a hanging basket for more mature cacti, since it trails more with age.

 

Price

$4–$10


Solana Succulents

355 North Highway 101, Solana Beach

@solanasucculents

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