Ask a Question forum: Moon cactus losing color

Views: 5779, Replies: 8 » Jump to the end
Name: Stel Venetoulis
Baltimore, MD
Stelios369
Feb 3, 2017 5:40 PM CST
I've had a moon cactus (from Lowes) for about 5 years. This thing has been a growing machine. During the summer I'd keep it outside on my deck, and once a month it would grow a branch 1-2ft long. Weird! The top cactus grows bulbs so large that it's become top-heavy. No matter how many times I re-pot it, it continues to slowly lean in one direction.
Anyway, after all this time the top cactus is now losing its red color. I've attached a few photos. Any tips on making it look healthy again? The bottom cactus is solid and a dark shade of green. Is it too much sun? I've had it in the window since I brought it inside.
Thanks for any help u can give me!
Thumb of 2017-02-03/Stelios369/d7d692
Thumb of 2017-02-03/Stelios369/083164
Thumb of 2017-02-03/Stelios369/87a668

Name: tarev
San Joaquin County, CA (Zone 9b)
Always count your blessings in life
Cat Lover Houseplants Plays in the sandbox Region: California Orchids Plant Lover: Loves 'em all!
Composter Cactus and Succulents Dragonflies Hummingbirder Amaryllis Container Gardener
Image
tarev
Feb 3, 2017 6:03 PM CST
My guess, the moon cacti losing color is on its last leg, die out phase. It is not really meant to last very long. But it did give you a good 5 years, so that is something to remember with.

On the good side, the bottom part as you said still looks okay, that one can still continue to grow. Those are two different plants anyways, with differing growth habits and watering needs.
[Last edited by tarev - Feb 3, 2017 6:12 PM (+)]
Give a thumbs up | Quote | Post #1364086 (2)
Name: Daisy I
Reno, Nv (Zone 6b)
Not all who wander are lost
Garden Sages Plant Identifier
Image
DaisyI
Feb 3, 2017 6:20 PM CST
That's the oldest one I've heard of.

Those long green branches are the bottom cactus attempting to grow. If you let those branches grow, chances are you wouldn't lose the plant.

The top cactus is a parasite - the bottom cactus is trying to support them both. Its a losing proposition. The top cactus takes more and more from bottom cactus and eventually, the bottom cactus dies. The top one will die also as its doing nothing for itself.
Life is not a journey to the grave with the intention of arriving safely in a pretty and well preserved body, but rather to skid in broadside, thoroughly used up, totally worn out, and proclaiming...."WOW What a Ride!!" -Mark Frost

Webmaster: osnnv.org
Name: Lin
Florida Zone 9b, 10a

Region: United States of America Deer Region: Florida Charter ATP Member Million Pollinator Garden Challenge I was one of the first 300 contributors to the plant database!
Garden Procrastinator Birds Butterflies Bee Lover Hummingbirder Container Gardener
Image
plantladylin
Feb 3, 2017 6:59 PM CST
I agree, the top grafted cactus is dying but the bottom plant should live on.

From what I've read, the one most commonly used for the top cactus is Gymnocalycium mihanovichii: https://garden.org/plants/sear... and the bottom cactus id Hylocereus sp. https://garden.org/plants/brow...

https://en.wikipedia.org/wiki/...

If the bottom part of your Moon Cactus is Hylocereus, you might eventually get some really pretty nocturnal, fragrant blooms! Dragon Fruit (Hylocereus undatus)
~ Playing in the dirt is my therapy ... and I'm in therapy a lot! ~


Name: Daisy I
Reno, Nv (Zone 6b)
Not all who wander are lost
Garden Sages Plant Identifier
Image
DaisyI
Feb 3, 2017 7:25 PM CST
Plantladylin is right in her ID's.
Life is not a journey to the grave with the intention of arriving safely in a pretty and well preserved body, but rather to skid in broadside, thoroughly used up, totally worn out, and proclaiming...."WOW What a Ride!!" -Mark Frost

Webmaster: osnnv.org
Name: Stel Venetoulis
Baltimore, MD
Stelios369
Feb 7, 2017 2:40 PM CST
Thank you for your responses! Oh well, too bad that it has to go.
Grafting on another top seems silly when I can buy an entire new one for $5.
I think someone suggested keeping the bottom plant since it's healthy and maybe see what that can do on its own.
Thanks again!
Name: Lin
Florida Zone 9b, 10a

Region: United States of America Deer Region: Florida Charter ATP Member Million Pollinator Garden Challenge I was one of the first 300 contributors to the plant database!
Garden Procrastinator Birds Butterflies Bee Lover Hummingbirder Container Gardener
Image
plantladylin
Feb 7, 2017 2:59 PM CST
I see no reason to throw away the bottom plant, at some point you may be pleasantly surprised with a beautiful plant.
~ Playing in the dirt is my therapy ... and I'm in therapy a lot! ~


Name: Keith
West Babylon, NY (Zone 7a)
Zinnias Lover of wildlife (Black bear badge) Annuals Spiders! Hybridizer Garden Photography
Vegetable Grower Tomato Heads Native Plants and Wildflowers The WITWIT Badge Daylilies Dog Lover
keithp2012
Mar 8, 2018 3:08 PM CST
That's not dying at all, yours is very healthy. Color fades in these over time on top. Mine started red and is now orange, but perfectly healthy
Name: Daisy I
Reno, Nv (Zone 6b)
Not all who wander are lost
Garden Sages Plant Identifier
Image
DaisyI
Mar 8, 2018 4:17 PM CST
Keith is right, the top plant is not dead or even 'sick'. If you allow a couple of those long green arms to grow, it will continue to thrive indefinitely.
Life is not a journey to the grave with the intention of arriving safely in a pretty and well preserved body, but rather to skid in broadside, thoroughly used up, totally worn out, and proclaiming...."WOW What a Ride!!" -Mark Frost

Webmaster: osnnv.org

« Garden.org Homepage
« Back to the top
« Forums List
« Ask a Question forum
Only the members of the Members group may reply to this thread.

Member Login:

Username:

Password:

[ Join now ]

Today's site banner is by sunnyvalley and is called "Aster and Sedum"