Christmas cactus: ‘Easy to maintain’ in winter – how to look after ‘amazing’ plant

Gardeners' World: How to care for houseplants

We use your sign-up to provide content in ways you’ve consented to and to improve our understanding of you. This may include adverts from us and 3rd parties based on our understanding. You can unsubscribe at any time. More info

Christmas cactus is a popular winter-flowering houseplant that makes a great addition to any room. While they require little care, placement of the plant is important as well as looking out for any pests.

One expert has shared top tips on how to look after the gorgeous plant.

Christ Bonnett from said: “There are some fantastically festive plants and flowers which are easy to care for during the chillier months and will add the spirit of Christmas to any room.

“Many of these blooms also make for beautiful presents, so are worth bearing in mind when buying for green-fingered friends or family members.

“Whilst these varieties are easy to care for, they can be pretty picky with heat and light.

“A windowsill might seem like a good idea, but the temperature really fluctuates in front of the glass in the winter, especially if there’s a radiator underneath.

“Avoid draughts and hot spots near radiators or fires too.

“Instead, display them somewhere that’s bright yet maintains a steady temperature.”

The expert explained one festive plant which is easy to care for is the Christmas Cactus.

Mrs Hinch fan shares ‘genius’ air fryer tip to remove burn marks [COMMENT]
Countryside estate with its own castle for sale – pictures [INSIGHT]
Grass cutting: Winter mowing ‘not necessary’ – here’s why [EXPERT]

He said: “The Christmas cactus is nothing to do with either the Christmas tradition or the story of Christ’s birth, but they are easy to maintain during cooler months.

“They look amazing too, flowering from late November all the way to late January.

“They will live happily in humid environments like kitchens and bathrooms, as they grow in tropical rainforests in the wild.

“During the summer months, when the risk of frost has gone, they can be placed outside.

“This will help to ripen new growth and encourages flowering.”

Chris added that they should also be kept in a shady spot and be protected from slugs.

The Royal Horticultural Society (RHS) explained that the cacti require “little” to “no pruning” at all.

However, they can get a “bit leggy” and old plants can become “congested”.

Looking for a new home, or just fancy a look? Add your postcode below or visit InYourArea

The RHS said: “To help the plant bush-up remove the tips and, with congested plants, remove a few of the oldest and most damaged stems.

“Always remove whole segments of the leaf-like stems; this will leave you with a nicer looking plant.”

While they are pretty much pest-free, the RHS said that mealybugs can be a common problem as well as shrivelling and general poor growth.

The website said: “Shrivelling of the stems can be caused by the plant being in a too hot and sunny situation. However it is often due to root deterioration cause by over or under watering.

“General poor growth can be a sign of over potting and the pot is too large for the plant; they do like to be snug in a pot.

“Remove the pot to check on root development. If there is little or no sign of new growth, with minimum disturbance remove excess compost and carefully put it into a smaller pot.

“This action should encourage new growth.”

Source: Read Full Article