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Schlumbergera Truncata & Buckleyi

Updated: Sep 19, 2022

Both these varieties are commonly known as Christmas Cactus. The Christmas Cactus is a cactus and a succulent. Where I live, Aberdeen Scotland, they are kept as popular houseplants. In other parts of the world they are called the Easter Cactus, Thanksgiving Cactus, Weihnachtskaktus, cactus de Noël, cacto de Navidad and the Chain Cactus. If you are really lucky your plant will flower more than once in a year.

Their natural habitat is jungle type woodland areas and are often attached to trees or rock outcroppings. Here they can grow into large shrubs and to a height of 1.2 metres [4 feet] and can widen out if there is sufficient space. Unlike some cacti their preference is to be out of direct sunlight for better growth with a humid atmosphere. They grow naturally in one area of the world, south eastern Brazil, and not everywhere there. They are selective and pick

areas that possess shade and high humidity. Sadly, its natural habitat is currently vulnerable to climate change.

The range of colours is wider than you might expect. Currently I have a pink and a red variety, but you can also get yellow, white, orange and purple flowering varieties. I need to start searching for some new colours to add to my collection.

They thrive in bright light but not scorching direct light. Otherwise their stems can get discoloured, scorched and damaged especially in full sun on window sills. The plants are happy in temperatures as low as 10C or 50F. They are relatively easy to care for. When repotting do not select too big a pot as the plant prefers to be snug. Schlumbergera are not bothered much by pests or disease, and lastly try not to over water as this encourages root rot.

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