You might think a cactus makes for an unusual Christmas plant, but when the Christmas cactus (Schlumbergera bridgessii) is covered in blooms, it is a most welcome sight in the middle of winter.
Unlike the desert-loving cacti many of us are used to, Christmas cactus is a native of tropical rainforests and needs regular water, to remain healthy.
The flattened leaves are actually stemmed segments that hang and drape from containers and baskets. The flowers will form at the ends of these stems, so the more stems your plant has, the more flowers.
Here’s what your Christmas cactus needs to grow well.
Light: They prefer a diffused light, although Christmas cacti sitting in a bright chilly window have been known to bloom profusely. They are very adaptable at adjusting to growing conditions.
Water: Water the plant thoroughly, allowing the excess water to run out through the drainage hole. Allow the soil to dry almost completely between waterings. Never let the soil sit wet. You will know if the soil is too dry when the leaves start to pucker and shrivel.
Humidity: The Christmas cactus also needs humidity, especially when grown in the dry conditions of heated homes. Either mist it or place a tray of pebbles sitting in the water underneath the plant. Do not let the water touch the bottom of the pot.