Where Can I Buy Christmas Cactus Near Me

In the late fall and winter, Christmas cacti are typically bought already in bloom or at least budded. Avoid drastic temperature changes when transporting your Christmas cactus since they can cause some of the buds to fall off. For optimal results, place in a light window and maintain the soil just moist enough. During the winter flowering season, fertilizer is not required.

Christmas cacti require as much light as possible once the last blooms have faded and prefer to be maintained on the cool side during rest periods (February – March and July – August). The plant needs to be transferred to a normal room temperature once the flower buds begin to appear in the fall.

At the start of the growth period, these cacti should be repotted every three to five years. It’s important that the soil flow easily, so always use a light soil (commercial cactus soil is acceptable).

The right amount of water, food, and relaxation must be given at the right times. Additionally, the length of daylight and the temperature of the environment will affect flowering.

The plant needs to rest when flowering is finished. Sparingly water it; do not let the stems to shrivel. If at all feasible, relocate the plant to a cool, well-lit area.

From the first of April, begin watering more frequently. Now that winter is over, the cactus will begin to flourish once more. The tips of each stem will have fresh shoots that may be seen plainly. If necessary, pot in April, and then feed a few times throughout the following months. Use a regular cactus soil that allows water to drain freely. If the soil is excessively damp, the weak roots will decay.

Christmas cacti can be placed outside in a light spot once the weather warms up. Avoid direct sunlight because certain types’ stems might become sunburned. I prefer bright, dappled shade.

This time of year is ideal for taking cuttings if you wish to. Placing good stems with two to four segments in damp sand makes propagation simple.

Reduce watering and let the soil completely dry in between waterings so that it doesn’t shrivel.

If you have your cactus outside for the summer, you can leave it there until the temperatures at night fall below fifty degrees (this period of cool nights and shortening days will encourage lots of flower buds). Restart increasing watering as soon as there are any indications of blossom buds. When growing blooms, the cactus must never become dry or be moved around excessively, as this will cause the buds to fall off the plant.

Mid-fall is when you should start to notice little, spherical buds emerging at the tips. When buds are growing in September and October, a few fertilizer applications may be beneficial for an old, huge plant.

It is diagnosed as needing more water. Give it a good soak in a basin of water or the sink, and after about 30 minutes, let it completely drain.

The roots are rotting, thus that is the diagnosis. Either the soil composition is incorrect or the plant has been overwatered. Take good cuttings and establish new plants because the plant cannot endure much longer.

The plant has either experienced too much movement or not enough water during the period when it establishes its buds, according to the diagnosis. More care should be given to it; observe the results. The next bloom cycle might be all that’s necessary for you to witness its splendor.

This year, give a Christmas cactus a try! The plant you purchase now might end up as an heirloom tomorrow!

The best Christmas cactus is…

Christmas cacti require direct, strong sunlight. If you’re placing yours indoors near a west or south-facing window, make sure the light is shaded with a sheer curtain because they will burn in direct sunlight. If your home is dry inside in the winter, put it on a tray of stones or put it close to other plants because they need humidity.

Never let them sit in water; only add water when the top feels dry. Christmas cacti prefer temperatures between 65 and 70 degrees during the day and 55 to 65 degrees at night.

Where can one locate Christmas cactus?

Christmas cactus, or hybrid Schlumbergera buckleyi, is a well-known cactus in the Cactaceae family that is grown for its eye-catching cerise flowers, which bloom inside around the time of Christmas in the Northern Hemisphere. The majority of Christmas cacti that are currently grown are thought to be hybrids between S. russelliana and the Thanksgiving, or crab, cactus (Schlumbergera truncata, originally Epiphyllum truncatum). It is native to Brazil, where it grows as an epiphyte in rainforests, primarily on trees or bushes but also in shaded areas among rocks. It is a member of the Schlumbergera genus. Zygocactus, the alternate name for the genus, is commonly used.

The Thanksgiving cactus and the Christmas cactus are sometimes confused, although the former has crenated (rounded) stem joint margins, and the latter has strongly saw-toothed stem joint margins. Thanksgiving cacti are frequently mistakenly marketed as Christmas cacti since they bloom in the late fall.

How often does a Christmas cactus bloom each year?

Whichever one you have, it’s possible for them to bloom more than once a year. For Your Reference, Here Are A Few Of Our General Houseplant Guides: Watering Indoor Plants: A Guide.

Can Christmas cacti be kept inside?

The common Christmas Cactus (Schlumbergera bridgesii), which blooms in the winter, is a lovely complement to almost any interior space. It is a superb contender for holiday gift giving because it is not only simple to maintain but also easily multiplies. Let’s examine how to grow and maintain a Christmas cactus.

How frequently should a Christmas cactus be watered?

Christmas cacti are highly common indoor plants, and for good reason too! They produce vibrant, tubular flowers that are pink or purple in hue when they bloom. They are a superb plant because of their lovely blossoms, lengthy bloom period, and simple maintenance needs. Someone in your family most likely owns a Christmas cactus!

About Christmas Cacti

The Christmas cactus (Schlumbergera x buckleyi) and its cousins don’t exist in hot, arid conditions like deserts or plains, in contrast to other cacti. These epiphytic succulents, which grow on tree branches and take in the high humidity, dappled sunlight, and moderate temperatures, are actually endemic to the tropical rainforests of southern Brazil.

Bottom line: Don’t handle a Christmas cactus like a typical succulent or cactus. They are unable to withstand the same kind of hot, dry weather that other cactus can. These cacti require more frequent watering than most succulents, but you also need to be careful not to overwater them. (See the care guidelines in more detail below.)

Thanksgiving, Easter, or Christmas Cactus?

The Easter cactus (S. gaertneri), Thanksgiving cactus (S. truncata), and Christmas cactus are the three main varieties of “holiday cacti” that are available (S. x buckleyi). The holiday that each cactus is named after often sees the most blooming. Thanksgiving cacti, which often bloom from November to February and hence go unrecognized as Christmas cacti, make up the majority of “Christmas cacti” sold nowadays. See our post on the several Christmas cacti species and how to distinguish them for more information.

Note: Because it’s the most widely used term and it applies to all three of these species, we’ll refer to all three of them on this page as “Christmas cactus” for simplicity’s sake.

Potting Christmas Cacti

  • Choose a pot with a drainage hole on the bottom if you’re choosing one for a Christmas cactus. This prevents the soil from getting overly saturated.
  • Most succulent-specific potting mixtures work well for Christmas cacti growth. It’s crucial that your potting soil drains properly.

Where to Put a Christmas Cactus

  • Plants should be kept in indirect light that is bright. The best location has an east-facing window or a well-lit bathroom. The delicate leaves might be bleached by too much direct sunshine.
  • It is preferable to have a daytime temperature of 70F (21C) and an evening temperature of 60–65F (15–18C).
  • Christmas cacti do well in a more humid climate, so keeping them in a well-lit bathroom or kitchen is a smart idea.
  • Christmas cacti can be kept in a shady area of the garden or on an unheated porch during the summer until the temperature drops below 50F. (10C). Keep them away from the sun’s rays outside.

How to Care for Christmas Cacti

  • Water your plants every two to three weeks, but only when the top third of the soil feels dry to the touch. If the plant is in 6 inches of soil, for instance, water when the top 2 inches of soil feel dry. (Check with your finger!)
  • When the soil is completely dry, wet it until water seeps through the drainage holes in the pot. To collect the water, put a tray underneath the pot. To prevent the pot from sitting in water, remove any extra water on the tray after 10 to 15 minutes.
  • While the plant is in bloom, it’s very crucial to water thoroughly.
  • Feed your indoor plants with a balanced houseplant fertilizer every two weeks from spring through early fall. Feed the cactus once a month in the fall and winter to promote fruitful blooming.
  • To promote branching and more flowers, prune plants in the late spring. Simply cut a portion of each stem off; the plant will grow new branches from the incision.
  • If desired, plant the cut pieces in potting soil that is only gently damp; they will easily root after a few weeks and make wonderful Christmas gifts!

How to Get Your Christmas Cactus to Bloom

The longer evenings and chilly weather of fall are what cause Christmas cacti and its relatives to bloom. The three major varieties of holiday cacti typically bloom on the following schedule:

  • Thanksgiving cactus typically produce flowers from late October through mid-winter, making them the earliest and longest bloomers.
  • Christmas cacti often bloom in the early to midwinter months.
  • Easter cacti flower around the middle of spring through late winter.

If your cactus isn’t flowering, it can be getting too much light or being exposed to too much heat. Here are some suggestions to help you get blooms from yours!

  • For a minimum of six weeks, the nights must be at least 14 hours long and the days between 8 and 10 hours. You might need to cover your cactus or relocate it to an area that is exposed to the natural light cycle if you have powerful interior lighting that is on at night.
  • When the plant is kept at temps between 50 and 60F, flower buds form best (10 and 15C).
  • By subjecting the plant to temps around 45F (7C) for a number of nights in a succession, you can jumpstart the budding process.
  • While the plant is in bloom, be sure to water it consistently. The plant may lose its buds if it dries out too much.
  • Don’t worry if the cactus loses its buds one winter; the following year it should bloom.

The three primary varieties of “holiday cacti” are as follows:

  • Often mistaken for Christmas cacti, Thanksgiving cacti (Schlumbergera truncata) bloom from late October to mid-winter.
  • Christmas cacti (S. x buckleyi) flower in the early to midwinter months.
  • Late winter to mid-spring is the blooming period for Easter cacti (S. gaertneri).
  • Make sure to water your Christmas cactus frequently and keep it cool when the buds on the plant appear ready to open.
  • The optimum time to propagate cuttings is late spring when most holiday cacti start to grow after their winter hibernation.

Blossom loss: Your Christmas cactus will probably lose its blossoms if it experiences any kind of stress. As mentioned in the plant care section above, this could be caused by the amount of light or a sudden shift in temperature. Make sure your soil doesn’t become overly dry while buds are developing.

The plant could be vulnerable to mealy bugs and root rot if overwatered. If you experience issues, remove the affected sections and repot the plant in fresh soil.

Are Christmas cacti fond of restrooms?

These Schulumbergea species are unique to a very tiny area on Brazil’s southeast coast. They develop in a number of coastal mountain ranges that are strongly influenced by the Atlantic Ocean’s proximity. Warm air from the shore is forced up into the mountains, where it hits cooler air at an altitude, causing condensation that keeps the environment very wet all year long. This results in the high altitude moist forests. The chilly, rainy weather is similar to that of the nearby Pacific Coast, where marine influence is constant.

These soft cacti are actually quasi-epiphytic, which implies that they are neither true air plants nor terrestrial like other cacti. They ask for conditions akin to those that orchids in damp lowlands find in the crotches of trees and crevices of branches. In the wild, the cactus prefers to grow on any surface where decomposing organic matter gathers beneath heavy coverings of fluffy moss. They frequently erupt from cliffs’ rock crevices, rooted firmly in the fissures where organic debris builds up and storing both nourishment and year-round moisture.

Christmas cacti require complete drainage, just as desert cacti, but they also require moisture. Getting this right can be challenging if you’re not careful. Organic matter dries up quickly in conditions of very low humidity. This explains why it’s really difficult to maintain Christmas cacti, and why they don’t grow as big as they do in moisture-controlled greenhouses. Any plant you purchase was produced and multiplied in such settings through commercial breeding.

The huge tubular flowers on this cactus, which open indoors during the short, gloomy winter days, are prized in colder areas. The flowers are designed for hummingbird pollination and are rich in nectar. Hummers will come to feed on sunny winter days if you use a larger plant as a patio table centerpiece when decorating for the holidays. These covered patios are perfect for limiting our strong UV exposure that can harm foliage and shorten life span because this cactus prefers filtered shade. Purchase hanging specimens to grow both inside and outside over the Christmas season.

The segmented structure of both the Christmas cactus and our wicked cholla is another similarity. This asexual reproduction technique results in segments breaking off when a bird lands on them or when there is a strong breeze. Segments separate, fall to new places, and take root there, demonstrating how simple it is to propagate plants at home. Simply cut off a few pieces, allow the incision to heal by hardening off for a day or two in the shade, and then place them into moistened dune sand. Roots grow rapidly.

The four basic species that make up the modern Christmas cactus were crossed, and then their hybrids were crossed again to produce flowers with more color and size. Christmas cacti, as opposed to Easter cacti, are members of the Buckleyi group, descended from Schlumbergia russelliana, which may be recognized by its pink pollen-coated downward-facing flowers.

Knowing these plants’ habitats makes it simple to determine what they require in order to thrive. It’s challenging, but it is possible if you are careful to spritz your plans with bottled water rather than our mineral-rich tap water, which leaves a white film on the leaves. Move them indoors beneath a bathroom skylight once the blooming has stopped since they enjoy the steam from the shower. Make sure drainage is open and simple, but water frequently to maintain the “soil” evenly moist. Avoid letting water collect in a saucer or cachepot.

If you’ve tried growing Christmas cactus in the past without success, you now understand why. It’s just a tropical humidity-loving rainforest cactus that was thrown into a scorchingly dry desert by the sun.

No matter how hard you try, your Christmas cactus will definitely die. Not you specifically, but our environment is to blame for these lovely blossoming plants ending up in the January trash. Despite being real cactus, they don’t resemble our desert species very well.