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I started my plant from just a small clipping of a Christmas cactus about 1 1/2 year ago and it never bloomed. Now it's getting big and I am wondering if I should put it in a bigger pot and what can I do for it to bloom? The clipping I took it from was a big Christmas cactus from a friend of mine and it bloomed I think twice a year if I'm not mistaken.
By Madeleine from Gatineau, Qc.
I've heard that if you put it in a closet or someplace dark for a couple of weeks, the plant would have the "cycle of the seasons" and this is suppose to "force the plant to bloom! I've never had a Christmas Cactus, but read it on a plant/gardening website!
Deniaka is right. You should put it in the dark and barely water it. I would say it might take longer than 2 weeks though.
My Christmas cactus blooms every year. I just put Jobe fertilizer sticks in around the 1st of Nov. I keep the soil moist. Feed it every couple of week with another 1 or 2 sticks. place it in bright defused sunlight area. There's blooms already starting by Thanksgiving. By Christmas it just blooming like crazy and will continue to bloom through January. :)
This cactus also likes to be slightly root-bound before it will bloom, so don't pot it up into a bigger pot until the roots are literally waving at you from the bottom of the pot.
I leave my cactus outside in the shade all spring and summer. When it starts getting cold at night around 40-45 degrees it will shock the plant and start the blooms after a couple weeks I bring the plants inside and in about a week all the blooms are open.
Personally, I would recommend not doing this unless absolutely necessary. Holiday cactus really like bring pot bound with their roots fairly crowded because they're epipytic (meaning they grow in trees). They really only NEED repotting every 2-3 years, but some repot every Spring in order to replenish nutrients to the soil.
I know this is a very old thread, but you can't just leave them in a closet for 6 weeks. They need anywhere from 13-15 hours of darkness. That leaves anywhere from 9-11 hours of LIGHT, whether it be ambient light in your house, sunlight, etc. These plants are great at storing photosynthesis but they do need some light, even when blooming.
A MUCH easier, natural course of action for these plants would be exposing them to cool temperatures around 50-55°F for at least 4 weeks, not even every day, and they will naturally produce buds/blooms and won't even need a closet to be stuffed into. ;)
They certainly can. As long as temperatures are not below freezing and/or they're exposed to frost, they can handle cool temperatures quite well. In fact, when exposed to cool temperatures of around 50-55°F they will eventually set buds/bloom as a natural response.
I was given this cactus three years ago around Mother's Day; it had beautiful flowers. I have repotted it.
Cool temperatures for a few weeks [50-55 degrees; outside is fine]. Or you can give them 'long nights' for about 14 hrs a day in order to make them bloom. Don't just stuff them in a closet as others have suggested. Mine also thrive outdoors in the summer! Prune in the Spring and they grow and grow. :) A fertilizer a few times a year is a great idea too.
My Christmas cactus bloomed a little at Christmas, a couple branches is all. Here it is the beginning of March and many of the branches are coming out with buds. Why? I have had a steady stream of blooms since Christmas, but only 4-5 blooms at a time.
I can only suggest to make sure the plant is getting an even amount of sunlight all over by turning it, & fertilize occasionally. Try not to move the plant when it is setting buds though. This commonly causes the buds to drop and/or fall off.
They need to have dark, cool treatment for 6-8 weeks before. Maybe you started giving this treatment late.