Too much or too little water, insufficient sunlight, low humidity levels in your home, or too low temperatures are the major causes of your Easter cactus’s demise. Your cactus can be restored to health if you can make accommodations for all of these factors.
Provide strong indirect sunshine, maintain constant soil moisture while the plant is actively growing (decrease watering in winter), and maintain high relative humidity around the plant for the best possible care of Easter cactus. After the petals fade, give your plant a month of dry rest, and in January–November, provide cool nighttime temperatures to encourage blooming.
How can a dying Easter cactus be revived?
- Withhold water in October and November if your Easter cactus isn’t flowering, as the plant needs a dry period to create blossoms. Until December, place the plants in a cool location with temperatures between 50 and 65 degrees Fahrenheit. In the evening, put them somewhere dark, then in the morning, bring them back into the light. Move the cactus to a cold, light-filled area in early December. After the plant blooms, you can start watering normally again.
What does an Easter cactus that is underwater look like?
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The Easter cactus (Hatiora gaertneri) resembles the more well-known Christmas cactus extremely closely, however it blooms in the spring rather than the winter. At the tips of flat, green branches that resemble leaves, pink to vivid crimson flowers bloom. If the plant isn’t given the right care, these “leaves may wrinkle.
So why do you look like Easter cactus leaves? The most frequent reason for this is underwatering, which makes the plant appear wrinkled and withered. However, excessive sunburn and insufficient humidity can also result in wrinkled leaves.
How frequently do I need to water my Easter cactus?
The most popular pot sizes for Easter Cacti are 4, 6, and 8 pots. They expand to become 1 x 1. Because it lives for a long time inside, older plants (10+ years) can grow to be 2 x 2.
Without direct sunshine, strong natural light is ideal for them. The thick leaves of a spring cactus will burn in the hot sun. For reference, mine is growing on a buffet in my dining room, which has three sizable east-facing windows. It is positioned about 10 feet from the windows, where it receives lots of light (Tucson is famed for its abundant sunshine!). They prefer bright shade while growing outside. As you can see from the video, my covered side patio’s northern exposure offers the best exposure.
These are epiphytic cacti, which are different from the desert cacti that Tucson is covered in. They grow on other plants and rocks rather than soil in their native rainforest settings. The roots must be able to breathe. Give yours a big swig of water and let the entire contents of the saucepan completely drain. Before you water the plant again, make sure it is completely dry. The roots should not be kept wet all the time because they will eventually rot. In between waterings, let the soil to dry out. It depends on a variety of things how frequently you water it. You should find this guide to watering indoor plants helpful. Water your Easter Cactus more frequently when it is blooming. At this point, you don’t want it to become fully dry.
They can withstand a variety of temperatures. Your Easter Cactus will feel comfortable in your home if you do. Just be aware that the blooming season will occur more quickly the warmer your home is. Keep children away from heaters and, in the opposite direction, from drafty areas. The evening temperature must be chilly for blooms to set. It is best between 45 and 55 degrees F. They can be grown outside all year long in temperate areas.
Although this epiphytic cactus favors humidity, it can survive in our homes despite their tendency to be dryer. I’ll put mine on a saucer with stones and water if it starts to appear less “plump & a bit on the dry side.” To prevent any rotting, make sure to keep the pot’s bottom out of the liquid. Soil
In their natural habitats, spring cacti grow on other plants, rocks, and bark. In soil, they do not grow. They eat leaves and other trash in the natural world. This indicates that they like a fairly porous mixture with considerable richness. I usually mix in compost and coco coir with a fairly chunky local succulent and cactus mix. This peat moss substitute is better for the environment since it has a pH that is neutral, can hold more nutrients, and enhances aeration.
None of my spring cactus have ever received fertilizer. Every spring, I always supplement with worm compost and organic compost. They’ve always had no trouble blooming. I’ll modify mine again in the summer here in the desert when it’s much hotter and dryer. You can use a balanced liquid houseplant fertilizer (such 10-10-10) in the spring, early summer, and mid-summer even if yours might not require it. My friend gave his Christmas and Easter cacti (20-10-20) all-around orchid fertilizer in the spring and again in the summer, and they both looked fantastic. It needs to be diluted to 1/4 strength. Add the fertilizer to the water at a quarter of the recommended rate. If necessary, I might try using my collection of orchids, which I have quite a number of. Wait to fertilize your Spring Cactus until it has completed blooming entirely, which should take 1-2 months. Before hitting it with the good stuff, you want it to relax!
I’ve only ever pruned mine to shape it or to make more plants. Speaking of propagation, leaf cuttings or division are both fairly simple methods. By chopping the terminal leaf parts off, you can take individual leaf cuttings. It is simple for me to twist them off. I select a few pieces, which I consider to be a stem. I then let the leaves or stems grow without them for about a week. They take a few weeks to root when I plant them in a plain succulent and cactus mix with about half of the leaf hanging out. I repotted them after one month has passed.
Take the entire leaf—don’t split it in half—and propagate it. Propagation works best, in my opinion, two to three months after flowering is over. Pests / Issues Mealybugs, spider mites, and possibly scale are common although mine have never experienced any of these. Another issue is the fungal disease known as root rot. By not overwatering and/or utilizing a soil mixture that is properly aerated and free drainage, you can prevent this.
Flowering Yes, this plant’s blossoms are quite attractive. Compared to the Christmas and Thanksgiving Cacti, whose flowers I think somewhat resemble Shrimp Plant flowers, these are more star-shaped. They come in vivacious violet, peach, red, orange, and that calmer Easter color, white. These plants are timed by the farmers to bloom around Easter. Although they can bloom long into or throughout May, they are primarily sold in March and April. The flowers will open more quickly and their overall blooming period will be shorter the warmer your home is.
Similar to what you do to get the Thanksgiving and Christmas cacti to bloom once again, you may get them to flower once more. Make sure your spring cactus receives an equal amount of sunshine and absolute darkness each day six to eight weeks before you want it to bloom. At this time, keep them dry to force them into dormancy. Depending on the temperature, the mix they are in, and the size and type of pot they are planted in, they may need watering every three to six weeks. Keep the temperature between 50 and 65 degrees Fahrenheit. At night, 50 to 55 degrees is ideal. Your need for more darkness will increase if your temperatures are warmer.
How can an overwatered Easter cactus be saved?
Don’t worry if your plant starts to show symptoms because overwatering is one of the common Christmas cactus issues. Move swiftly to remove any standing water, then take the plant carefully out of its container. Eliminate any stems that have begun to soften. Rinse the roots to get rid of any fungus that may have developed, and then leave them to air dry on the counter for a day.
The following morning, repot the plant and let it a few days to dry out before starting a normal watering schedule. The plant should recover if you caught it in time. As the Christmas cactus may not be able to endure another disease, use your soil meter to prevent any other issues.
Just in Case!
One of the simplest plants from which to take cuttings is the Christmas cactus. Pick healthy stems and start the roots by putting them in a glass of water, perlite, or vermiculite. For better drainage, put them in a mixture of one part sand, one part potting soil, and one part orchid bark.
To encourage the evaporation of extra moisture, use an unglazed pot. By doing this, you can be sure that you won’t ever have to worry about trying to save an overwatered Christmas cactus again. Up until a few weeks prior to the blossoming season, provide full sun. Then, to encourage blossoming, give it a minimum of 14 hours of darkness each day. For this time, stop watering as well. You’ll soon have a festive cactus to add color to your celebrations and share with friends and family.
How can I revive my dead cactus?
HOW TO SAVE A DIEING CACTUS AND RENEW YOUR PLANT
- REMOVE ROTTING COMPONENTS. Overwatering is typically indicated by rotting.
- CHANGE THE DAILY LIGHT.
- REVERSE WATERING.
- RINSE OFF DUST AND GREEN.
- PEST & INSECT CONTROL.
- FERTILIZE WITH LOW NITROGEN.
- ALLOW THEM TO DRY
- WATCH FOR DISCOLORATION & MUSHY SECTIONS.
What does a cactus that is dying look like?
Possible dead cactus symptoms include: Cacti topple over or are exceedingly flimsy in the ground. Spikes could come off. These two symptoms point to both root rot and overwatering. Yellow turns brown in color.
How can I know if my cactus is getting too much water?
Here are a few frequent problems that many plant owners have when trying to determine the best approach to take care of succulents and cacti.
Cacti and succulents adore light. No succulent or cactus we’ve ever seen wants to sit on your gloomy office desk, even if some species (for succulents, try haworthia or gasteria; for cacti, try epiphytes like rhipsalis and hatiora) can endure lower light. To thrive, these guys need to be close to a window, ideally one that faces south so they can make the most of the sunlight. The first step in determining whether you are prepared to care for succulents and cacti is to choose a light spot in your home.
When they don’t receive enough light, succulents exhibit peculiar behavior. If your succulents require more light, you’ll frequently notice yellowing in them. Bright pink, purple, or yellow colors frequently return to simply plain green, while deep green will eventually fade to pale green.
The development habits of succulents are similarly impacted by inadequate light. Succulents frequently become long and spindly in an effort to reach for the light. Sempervivum and echeveria species, which typically grow in rosettes, may suddenly start growing tall and reaching for additional light.
Likewise with cacti. As the cactus strives for light, what was formerly dark, robust flesh may turn pale. Additionally, just like “reaching succulents,” cacti that don’t get enough light will exhibit odd growth patterns. Etiolation is the process of new growth being significantly smaller than the rest of the plant; occasionally, long, tendril-like branches or unusually skinny new growth on the top of the cactus will emerge.
Succulents and cacti can bounce back from too little light, but the etiolated growth habit is irreversible. If the strange growth pattern bothers you, consider trimming it off. Many succulents and cacti may flourish after pruning. The new growth that appears should be “normal and non-etiolated” as long as you relocate your plant to a position where it will receive enough light.
Finally, because the soil will remain wet for too long in the absence of proper light, root rot might also result. See if your plant might be experiencing root rot as a result of inadequate light by seeing the photographs of it below.
Most cacti and succulents can withstand direct sunlight. However, if your plant isn’t used to it, using too much can be hazardous. For instance, moving a succulent or cactus onto the porch for the summer (very recommended!) and suddenly exposing it to 3 or 4 hours of direct sunlight per day will cause it to burn.
Burn typically manifests itself on your cactus and succulents as browned or calloused flesh. Your best approach for recognizing burn is to look for discoloration, especially on the side of the plant facing the window. A coarser texture will develop on the burned leaves or meat compared to the remainder of the plant.
Burnt leaves cannot be repaired; you can either remove them by pruning or by changing the surroundings so that your plant receives more suitable light.
Succulents and cacti should be moved outdoors during the summer, but do it gradually to give them time to become used to the brighter environment. Start them off in a shaded outdoor space (which will still be brighter than your living room, most likely), and gradually increase their exposure to light over the course of a week or two.
not enough It is undoubtedly safer to provide too little water than too much in the context of caring for succulents and cacti. Despite this, succulents and cacti do require water, particularly in the spring and summer when they are actively growing.
The problematic issue is that having too much or too little water can sometimes appear alike. However, if you err on the side of caution, you might reasonably assume that you are under-watering if your plant exhibits the following behaviors.
When succulents receive insufficient water, they frequently pucker. Because they store water in their foliage, succulents and cacti are lush and meaty. The plant relies on these water reserves to live during dry spells. As the plant physically consumes its water stores, the flesh will start to shrivel or pucker. As observed in these jade species, this typically begins on the lower leaves and moves its way up the plant:
Here’s another illustration of a succulent that is thirsty (a few of which often happen to be etiolated from low light). Observe how they seem a little bit shriveled:
Additionally, a dry cactus may pucker or shrivel in addition to discoloring (usually getting brown and dry, or calloused).
Give your cactus and succulents a nice, thorough watering if they exhibit these symptoms. But always choose cactus or succulent soil that drains properly, as your plants won’t want to stay in wet soil for very long. The leaves should quickly re-puff up!
too much From only a picture, it might be difficult to tell whether a cactus has received too much or too little water. Without knowing how much water it received, for instance, it would be difficult to determine whether this opuntia cactus received too much or not because the symptoms are frequently similar:
However, a succulent or cactus that has received too much water will feel mushy rather than simply puckered. These plants can store a lot of water, but once that storage capacity is exhausted, the plant will literally come apart as the cell walls and roots decay. This results in them becoming mushy, and it’s a crucial distinction that may help you distinguish between over- and under-watering while also looking at your own watering practices and the surrounding environment.
Overwatering is characterized by a variety of symptoms, including browning or blackening of the plant’s leaves or stems, browning or blackening at the plant’s base, mushy or leaky plants, and plants that are practically decomposing in front of your eyes.
Gently remove your succulent or cactus from its pot and look at the roots if you suspect decay. When a plant has brown or black roots, it
To cool Because they are native to desert settings, the majority of succulents and cacti are well-suited to freezing nighttime temperatures (jungle cacti, for example). Most succulents and cacti prefer chilly nights, especially in the winter. In fact, several species, such jade, christmas cactus, and epiphylum, bloom more readily in colder climates.
Low temperatures, however, can be an issue indoors because they frequently coincide with high humidity levels. When you water your cacti and succulents in the cool winter months, the soil will remain moist for a lot longer than it would in the hot summer months. You guessed it: root rot results from cool, damp soil.
Pay close attention to your succulent and cactus watering schedule if your house gets quite cold in the winter. You might only need to water your plants once a month or even less, depending on their type, size, drainage capabilities, and pot. Additionally, we advise erring on the side of caution when it comes to winter watering and giving the plant a moderate amount as opposed to completely soaking the soil.
The procedures outlined above for identifying over-watering are the best approach to determine if too-cold temperatures are having an impact on your succulents and cacti.
too warm Cacti and succulents are particularly skilled at tolerating high temperatures since they can survive cold temperatures for the same reason! After all, the desert is a region of extremes.
However, excessive heat in an indoor growth setting frequently causes watering problems. If your plants are outdoors in the heat, they will quickly dry out. Depending on the heat and exposure, you might need to water your succulents and cacti twice a month or even every week.
When put in a window, excessive temperatures can also be a problem for cacti and succulents. Plants can be burned by the sun’s heat coming through glass since it tends to be more intense. Utilizing the detection procedures outlined under “too much light,” check for burn.
What cacti-related issues have you had? How are succulents cared for? There is so much to learn, and we’d love to learn from you. Please share with us in the comments.
Have inquiries? For a chance to have your issue addressed in the upcoming episode of Pistils Rx, feel free to post it in the comments section or send us an email with images.