Gardening

Christmas cactus or Schlumbergera care

It is one of those plants that will mark the arrival of Christmas in a natural way. A warning that we have to thank for its spectacular winter flowering that almost always coincides with the arrival of the month of December. Enjoying this striking display involves knowing the care of the Christmas cactus by heart. Some that, on the other hand, are highly affordable for any level of gardening.

Let’s start by learning a little more about this fascinating hanging cactus. Despite its popular name, the truth is that its botanical name is much more complex: Schlumbergera. In addition to this detail, it is important to know that it is a plant native to tropical areas of central and southern America. A detail that forces us to cultivate this botanical species as part of our indoor plants to ensure their well-being.

So let us know how to grow this beauty. Because, only with proper care, we can enjoy the spectacle of its blooming in intense pink, yellow or the most characteristic color of Christmas. And that is another of the attractions of the Schlumbergera: that it is part of the list of red plants to decorate your house at Christmas.

7 CHRISTMAS CACTUS CARE

One of the benefits of the Schlumbergera is that it requires little to grow abundantly. Its flat stems can reach a maximum of half a meter if we are rigorous with its demands. What’s more: if we do not comply with any of the Christmas cactus care, the plant will let us know by drying some of its segments. A detail that we must know to try to solve any deficiency in time.

Learn about the care of the Christmas cactus and enjoy this spectacular plant. get it here

In addition to this, another curiosity more. In its natural state, this cactus is epiphytic, as is the case with many orchids. This means that it lives at the expense of other plants in nature, although its domestic cultivation is done in a pot and in a very different way.

So let us thoroughly know how to cultivate it. Because, despite the fact that its name is cactus, there are a good number of details that have nothing to do with how to take care of succulent plants.

1. Lighting, key in its development

One of the aspects that, even though it is called a cactus, differentiate it from them. When we talk about these plants, we automatically think of lots of direct sun. However, in the case of the Christmas cactus, exposing it to this type of lighting will be negative for the plant.

Its natural origin largely marks its light needs. And, while it needs a lot of lighting, it should never be direct.

2. Temperature, important for your well-being

It is a plant of tropical origin, so it will need warm environments to live with well-being. Ideally, it should be in an environment with temperatures between 15 and 22 degrees.

It is not recommended to expose our Christmas cactus to temperatures below 10 degrees, since the cold can compromise the life of the plant.

3. Irrigation, one of the crucial Christmas cactus care

And we come to what is, without a doubt, one of the most important Christmas cactus care. Unlike other cacti, this unique specimen has much higher and regular irrigation demands.

The irrigation pattern depends on the time of year or, better said, the vegetative moment of the plant. During the time when the plant develops its segments, it is important to keep the substrate slightly moist. Once the flowering has finished, the ideal is to extend the irrigations up to one every ten weeks. With the arrival of spring and summer, the ideal is to resume watering at a rate of one or two a week depending on the temperature. Important: let the substrate dry before watering again.

As important as hydration is for your Christmas cactus, there are a few factors to keep in mind. On the one hand, it is important to always use lime-free water. On the other, nothing to overdo with irrigation. It can cause the appearance of fungi and even rot its stems.

4. The subscriber, fundamental for its growth

The Christmas cactus has a high demand for nutrients in order to maintain its growth but also for its proper health. For this reason, although the spring months will be the most intense for the subscriber, the truth is that it does not hurt to maintain the pattern throughout the year.

Paying regularly is essential in the care of the Christmas cactus. Get our formula designed for cacti here

During the spring and summer months, the ideal is to use a liquid substrate for cacti and succulents that we will dilute in the irrigation water. Ideally, maintain a pattern of one fertilizer application per month during this period.

5. Environmental humidity, another detail to pamper

Since it is native to a tropical zone, we cannot neglect the environmental humidity. In fact, although it is one of the least considered Christmas cactus care, it is decisive for its well-being.

In general, the ideal is that the space in which we have our plant has a good degree of environmental humidity. Something that we can achieve by placing bowls with water or even creating a microclimate for our Christmas cactus. Achieving it involves placing a decorative plate with water under the pot separated from its base by means of clay balls or decorative stones. It is essential that the water is never in contact with the base of the pot.

6. The transplant, a vital task in the care of the Christmas cactus

What we want is for our plant to grow properly. And for this, in addition to paying regularly, we will have to allow you to do so. How? Transplanting it every two years, and always in spring.

As important as transplanting is using the correct substrate. Learn about the advantages of the Verdecora cactus substrate

Beyond offering our plant ever-larger pots, there are two aspects that are even more important. On the one hand, it is vital that we provide our Christmas cactus with proper drainage. But in addition, achieving this involves using a specific substrate for cacti and succulents that favors the elimination of excess irrigation water.

7. Pests, an enemy of the Schlumbergera to be closely controlled

The last of the Christmas cactus care that we will have to know. Although it is true that it is a robust plant, it is subject to one of the pests par excellence: the cochineal. An uncomfortable and dangerous travel companion that we will have to eradicate as soon as we detect it.

Do not hesitate to include this wonderful plant in your selection! You will not only enjoy its beautiful flowers: you will also naturally add color to Christmas.

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