Caring For Christmas Cactus
SCHLUMBERGERA (CHRISTMAS CACTUS)
Christmas cacti come from forests where they grow not in the soil, but attached to trees. They are very easy to care for and will flower year after year. or cream) coloured parts are not actually flowers but modified leaves called bracts. The real flowers are tiny, yellow and at the centre of the bracts.
CHRISTMAS CACTUS CARE
Position in a well-lit area, not in direct sunlight. Temperature 15-21˚C while in bud and flowering. In the rest period after flowering it should be lower, at 10-13˚C. From June to September they can be put out in the garden in a shady spot (protected from slugs!). Similar to the Poinsettia, the Christmas Cactus is prompted to flower by the amount of daylight it has received. Therefore it may flower later or earlier than Christmas , depending on what conditions it has been in. When in bud and flower you can water generously, although the compost needs to be allowed to dry out a little between waterings. Feed regularly with a houseplant fertiliser when in bud and flower.
The plant needs a rest period from approximately February to March. It should be left just moist during this time. From April onwards it can be watered and fed as normal. Repot when necessary after flowering.
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