Zygocactus Winter Flowering Houseplants

October 23, 2016 in Flowers and Bulbs by Christine

Zygocactus Care How to Grow Zygo Cactus as House Plants

zygocactus christmas cactus and crabs claw cactusZygocactus is an attractive looking plant that grows all over Australia. It just needs to be placed in cooler areas to grow and flower well. This plant flowers during autumn and winter. It is a winter plant that has pretty and attractive looking flattened bell like flowers at the tip of its stem. Its botanical name is Schlumbergera and even though these plants belong to the cactus family, they are not desert plants. The branches of Zygocactus are spineless and flattened and they produce asymmetrical flowers. The Zygocactus best use as a patio, hanging basket plants, conservatory plants or can be grown as indoor plants for a short time.

When do Zygocactus flower?

The Zygocactus plants will bloom during the winter as the flowering of the plant is influenced by shorter days or long winter nights. It is important that these plants are not exposed to a lot of light, even household lights, as the flower of the plant will be totally reduced. They need to be set in a frost free position. The colours of the flowers range from pink, red, lavender, orange, yellow and white. Zygocactus loves cool temperatures, but are adverse to freezing conditions.

How to propagate and grow Zygocactus in hanging baskets?

It is not a bad idea to grow Zygocactus in hanging baskets. In order to grow them in hanging baskets, you need to first grow the plant from its cutting. In the cutting method, you should break off a leaf segment and leave it on its own for a few days till you see aerial roots developed. This process might take a few days to several weeks, depending on the climate and light. Once the roots are developed, you can plant the cuttings in a pot that is filled with well drained potting mixture. The cuttings will start to grow soon under favourable conditions. This is when you should transplant the Zygo cactus cuttings in hanging baskets. If you are looking for a quick effect, then you should place several cuttings in a hanging basket at the one time. You should make sure that the hanging basket is filled with best quality potting mix. Planting it in hanging baskets will allow the stems to arch down from the plant’s crown and they will feel like they are growing in their natural habitat.

Care for Zygocactus

The Zygocactus are easy plants to grow indoors or in patio areas. They do not need much attention. One of the main problems of Zygocactus care is overwatering of the plant. It just needs a good drink and make sure that you water the plant only when the top soil has gone dry. Too much water can rot the plant. As they are epiphytic plants, you should make sure that they get only minimal fertilising. Feed them with a gentle fertiliser during the growing season. An organic fertiliser that is less on nitrogen is ideal. They should be placed in areas where there is no direct sunlight. Zygocactus must only be planted in a well draining container and soil. When you see flower buds forming on the plant, you should increase the light and humidity. Prune the Zygocactus a month after it has bloomed, this way the plant will develop new branches. It is essential to repot the plant every 2 to 3 years.

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