The Christmas Cactus

Some love the holidays because it’s when Christmas cacti bloom! It is very low maintenance and so easy to propagate. After flowers fall take a clipping. The cactus grows in humid tropical jungles. When you take a clipping, create humidity around it for optimal growth, by using a mason jar. It loves diffused light, frugal watering, and well-draining soil. The new plant may bloom within months of clipping. This cactus blooms twice a year, in spring and in fall from a limited sun exposure.

To take a cutting, make sure there are at least two of sections to start a new plant. Twist at a joint to remove from the mother plant. Leave the cutting on a plate or windowsill with diffused sunlight to scab over for one day before planting to keep the stem from sucking too much water from soil and rotting. When it is dry on the cut end, place in a pot with moist loose well-draining soil. Put a quarter of the cutting beneath the surface. Place it in a window but avoid direct sunlight. Let soil go almost dry between watering. Cover the cutting with a jar to generate humidity. After two to three weeks the propagated Christmas cactus will show signs of new growth.