Christmas Cactus - Knowledgebase Question

Clovis, Ca
Question by lakenev
February 23, 2011
How can I repot and rejuvenate a once large Christmas cactus?


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Answer from NGA
February 23, 2011

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Despite the name "cactus", these plants need ample bright light, adequate moisture and fertility in order to grow actively, so your plants may have been lacking one or more of those factors. Christmas cactus flowers best when it is pot bound so don't repot yours unless the roots are escaping from the drainage holes in the pot. When they do and you know it is really pot bound, choose the next largest pot size and use regular potting soil to repot. Keep the soil barely moist, and set the pot in a warm bright location but out of direct light. You can prune your plant back to encourage healthy new growth. Since these plants can be started from cuttings, use what you prune off to start new plants. Cuttings should be about four to six inches long and set into barely damp potting mix. Roots will form at the "joints" in the stem, so cut the piece so that there is a joint at the end of it and set the cutting deep enough into the soil so that about two joints are covered and it will stand on its own. When the cuttings have rooted you'll see new leaves appear. Enjoy your Christmas cactus!

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