How To Repot A Coral Cactus

Euphorbia lactea was grafted onto a root stock of Euphorbia neriifolia.

To carefully pull the gravel mat away from the pot’s edge and the plant stem without harming the plant or its roots, use a thin object. Use a cactus soil blend or a 50/50 mix of ordinary potting soil and sand to repot into a container with drainage holes. Plant roots just shallowly enough to hide them. Once the plant is anchored and can’t lean or tilt, compact the earth around it.

How is a coral cactus replanted?

If you decide to proceed with propagating your coral cactus, be sure to take the necessary safety precautions by donning gloves and protective glasses, and then proceed as follows:

  • Pick a plant with a sound rootstock first.
  • Use a clean, sharp knife to make a “V” shape in the top of the plant.
  • Snip the stem gently where it joins the branch, and make sure to thoroughly rinse the sap away with cold water.
  • The cuttings should be dipped in a rooting hormone powder and left to dry for about a week, or until calloused.
  • After the cuttings have been calloused, place them upright in a well-draining soil, spray the cutting’s surface, and watch as the cuttings begin to take root.

Additionally, it is essential to keep your cuttings in a warm environment. This will hasten the roots’ establishment in heated conditions, which would typically take a few weeks to complete.

Does coral cactus require grafting to grow?

Your coral cactus might not be content in your home if it is treated just like the majority of cacti. So how do you take care of this peculiar hybrid plant? Of course, by treating it like the muddled Euphorbia specimen that it is!

Light and Temperature

Zones 10 and 11 allow for year-round outdoor cultivation of coral cacti, however in other areas cooler months should be spent indoors. This particular plant prefers a temperature range of 60 to 85 degrees for optimum growth.

Although it may be planted in full sun, hotter climates should choose partial shade during the hottest part of the day to prevent sunburning the plant. To give a new plant time to acclimate, it should be begun in conditions of partial shade and trained gradually to accept more and more sun.

If grown indoors, choose a window that receives adequate sunlight for at least three to five hours each day, and rotate it frequently to prevent your plant from growing unevenly.

The coral cactus is also not at all cold-hardy. It favors temperatures in the 60s and higher and dislikes any drops in temperature below the 50s. Bring it indoors to a warmer environment if the weather outside becomes too chilly.

Coral cactus is a succulent plant that is not at all tolerant of freezing temperatures; doing so will harm the plant’s delicate tissues and cause it to die.

Water and Humidity

When in doubt, don’t water is the cardinal rule for most cacti and succulents.

Coral cactus, on the other hand, presents a bit of a challenge because it doesn’t handle dehydration as well as a true cactus would. However, this plant despises being in damp environments. Your euphorbia may experience issues like root rot if your soil is extremely damp.

Check the soil moisture first. The plant is undoubtedly thirsty if the top two to four inches of your soil are dry. Water the soil, not the plant, until the water comes out of the bottom of the pot.

Your coral cactus is certainly under-watered if it appears droopy or wilted. When possible, try to prevent this situation because it can harm the crest and, if it persists for too long, develop fungal problems or rot.

As too-wet soil can lead to root rot and ultimately kill your plant, over-watering is another issue. Never irrigate the soil without first checking it!

In the spring and summer, when your coral cactus is actively growing, you will typically need to water it more frequently. The plant requires less water in the fall and winter, so the frequency of watering is reduced during those seasons.

Your coral cactus will appreciate humid conditions as long as they have excellent airflow, despite the fact that it can be a little picky about how frequently it needs to be watered. They are therefore a wonderful choice for growing in a greenhouse or inside, but keep an eye out for powdery mildew symptoms.

Soil

A cactus potting soil or other exceptionally well-draining, grittier soils are preferred by the typical euphorbia species. For added nourishment, they prefer a small amount of organic material placed into the planting hole, but regular cactus soil works just as well.

The pH of the soil makes no difference to the coral cactus, therefore it can be anywhere between slightly acidic and slightly alkaline without experiencing any significant alterations.

Store-bought grafted plants are frequently mulched with gravel, which is occasionally adhered together to reinforce the plant’s base during transportation. This won’t harm the plant, but it makes it challenging to tell whether it needs water.

It’s simpler to mulch if you remove any glued gravel from the area around your plant and replace it with loose gravel that can be moved out of the way. If it’s an outside plant, a gravel mulch can help prevent weeds and quick soil drying. Alternatively, you can remove the mulch entirely.

Fertilizer

Your coral cactus needs regular fertilization during the spring and summer when it is actively growing. Fertilize no more frequently than every two weeks using a 10-10-10 liquid fertilizer that has been diluted to 1/4 of its original strength (making it a 2.5-2.5-2.5). If your land is fertile, you might need even less.

The fall and winter seasons are not the best times to fertilize your plant because it doesn’t need the extra nutrients. Additionally, stay away from slow-release or granular fertilizers because they may rub up against your euphorbia’s rootstock and burn the plant.

Grafting A Coral Cactus

The majority of the time, cuttings that have been immersed in rooting hormone are used to grow euphorbias. However, because the coral cactus is a grafted plant, the only way to grow more of them is through the somewhat difficult process of grafting.

Choose two healthy specimens of Euphorbia neriifolia and Euphorbia lactea var. cristata to work with first. The grafting process is significantly easier on young plants than it is on mature ones.

Picking is made easier if you visualize the lactea’s crest on top of the neriifolia’s base. Find a pair that seems to be made for each other!

The neriifolia must be cut into a V shape, cutting the top of the plant but leaving enough of the sides to sustain the crown. To fit tightly into the neriifolia stem, the bottom of the euphorbia lactea crest will require an arrowhead-shaped cut that extends outward from the base of the crest.

Make sure your cuts result in a snug fit with no free spaces. Open spaces between the two plants will let sap escape and could result in the growth of fungal rots.

After inserting your crest into the neriifolia’s V, coat all of the joining surfaces with grafting wax to keep them sealed and spotless. To prevent getting the sap from either plant on your skin during this process, proceed with extreme caution. gloves are a must.

To keep the Franken-plant in place and secure the grafted connection, use string. The two plants will need at least two to three weeks to fully meld together, but it might take longer.

Remove the grafting wax carefully and examine the joint after three weeks. If it appears that it needs more time to heal together, apply fresh grafting wax, wait an additional three weeks, and then retie the twine to hold it in place. Watch out not to hurt your joint!

Repotting

In a pot, coral cactus rarely becomes root-bound. It’s a good idea to put on the gloves when you first bring a grafted plant home and carefully slip it out of the pot so you can inspect it. It ought should be able to survive in that pot for a good while as long as it is not rootbound.

If there are indications of root entanglement, you can choose a slightly larger pot and replant it there, supplementing the soil with additional cactus potting mix as necessary. Make sure your pot has effective drainage.

The majority of coral cactus plants are typically grown in “breathable” pots made of terracotta or another material that allows any excess water to evaporate. Unfortunately, this also implies that they might dry out more quickly in warmer weather. Although these are excellent containers for your plant, pay attention to the water level.

Pruning

Coral cacti typically don’t need to be pruned. This is only an exception if the cactus gets a fungal rot, by which time it might already be too late.

Roots or the plant’s crest can be affected by fungus rots. Your crest may start to darken or soften, which is typically an indication of decay. If you take care, you may be able to do surgery on the crest to remove any fungal-damaged fragments that are present near the crest’s borders.

Your plant should recover as long as you remove all of the damaged crest. Wear gloves and a sterilized razor blade to prevent touching your skin with any of the lethal latex. As the plant’s latex will form a scab as it dries, you don’t need to seal off the wounded surface.

For beginners, how do you repot a cactus?

When you’ve decided whether to repot your cactus, it’s time to grab your equipment and exchange the old soil or container with the new one. Fresh soil is an excellent idea even though every cactus doesn’t require a new container. Only plants that are pot-bound require a larger pot.

Gently tong, glove, or wrap the plant out of its pot. If the soil is dry, they normally come out easily, but you might need to use a trowel to remove the soil around the edges. Plant the cactus at the same depth it was growing in the old soil after shaking off the old soil. Put it in a bright southeast or east window, filling in the area around the roots with your medium.

Not watering the plant right away while it is accustomed to being handled and new soil conditions is one of the most crucial repotting cactus advices. A few weeks later, you can water the plant, let it dry up, and then water it once more.

My coral cactus is dying; why?

The majority of succulents don’t need a lot of care or maintenance. There are a few things you can do to make sure your coral cactus develops into a robust plant, though. Discover all there is to know about this unusual plant by reading on!

Finding the Right Pot

Find a planter with sufficient drainage so the dirt can dry out fast because succulents detest wetness. Since they are more porous and control the moisture surrounding your plant, clay or terracotta pots are more suitable for succulent plants. Make sure it has sufficient drainage if you choose to use a plastic or ceramic pot, and try to water your coral cactus less frequently.

Choosing the Right Soil

Use soil that drains well, just like the pots, to ensure the survival of your coral cactus. Root rot might result from keeping too much moisture within. For a light, drainable soil mixture, use a cactus and succulent potting soil combination.

Since coral cactuses don’t have particular pH requirements, most soil mixtures will work just fine. Just watch out for excessive moisture absorption. Even better, try blending regular potting soil, perlite, and coarse sand to make your own custom blend!

Watering a Coral Cactus

Always err on the side of caution when it comes to watering coral cacti. Overwatering is particularly harmful to succulents, and root rot and death can occur more quickly than you might expect.

Checking the dirt underneath the pot to see if it is dry is a fantastic technique to determine whether you need to water your plant. You can water your coral cactus until the soil is completely submerged once the soil is dry. Before watering again, wait a couple of weeks or make sure the soil is dry.

It may be a hint that you need to water your coral cactus if you see it wilting or drooping. On the other hand, you might be overwatering your coral cactus if you see it developing blisters or becoming top-heavy.

Placement and Lighting

The coral cactus can grow both indoors and outdoors and is quite adaptable. They prefer partial sunlight, thus they require some shade to protect themselves from the heat. Just keep in mind to give some shade if you decide to put your coral cactus outside so it doesn’t spend the entire day in the sun.

To avoid direct sunlight, you should ideally place your coral cactus in a south-facing window. The plant may burn if it is subjected to intense heat and UV rays. Make sure it gets equal sunshine on both sides; otherwise, one side can get more lopsided than the other.

Pruning Your Coral Cactus

Coral cactus rarely needs to be pruned unless fungal rot starts to take hold. It can already be too late if the plant starts to decay. However, you can attempt to remove the decaying portions. Remember to put on gloves to protect yourself from the harmful residue and to cut off any rot that may have developed in the stem or crest using a sterile blade.

Humidity and Temperature

If you are in a region with consistently warm weather, now might be the ideal time to put your coral cactus outside. Just be careful to keep dogs and children away from this lethal plant.

How frequently should a coral cactus be watered?

Water the plant once a week or every two weeks from spring through summer, or whenever the soil is dry 1 inch down. As cacti can rot in the fall and winter if left too moist, reduce watering to once a month during those times, then start weekly or biweekly watering in the early spring.

A coral cactus can you separate it?

No chlorophyll means no ability. So, even though it might not be simple, you can de-graft it if it is significantly green. A tiny bit of green indicates that you can try, but the results will be meager or grow extremely slowly.

The branches should be cut off if the stock is sprouting. Since they are typically fairly tenacious species, the desired colorful part will be lost as they swiftly take over. In some circumstances, they might figuratively take over your house. Consider trying to root one of the branches and seeing what results you get.