Zygocactus in bloom.


I found this glorious zygocactus (Schlumbergera, Christmas cactus) in full bloom in a sunny bay window at my Mom-in-law’s residence this past weekend, and it got me thinking that I’ve never attempted to grow one before.  It is definitely time to change that!

Do you grow zygocacti?  Do you have any tips for me? 

(P.S. In case you’re wondering, I did indeed alter the natural position of the bloom so that it doesn’t turn downward in this photo).


  1. I have never bought a Christmas cactus but I have 5 that I have received as orphans from others because “the plants won’t grow in their house”. I have ones with white, pink and deep red blooms; 4 out of 5 are blooming at the moment (the other had an altercation with a child!). I keep mine on a window ledge on the north side of my house. It seems the side that touches the window blooms first so I turn them now and again. I only water them when they are completely dry.

  2. My Christmas cactus is still blooming too. Started around Easter as it does most years. I usually get lovely blooms spring and again late fall, early winter. You should definitely give one a try.

    • I will! (I took a cutting, but not off the plant in the photo). Mum has grown quite a few from cuttings and she showed me what to do. Looking forward to seeing if I have any luck! 🙂 I really like the idea that it may bloom more than once a year.

      Have a wonderful weekend! Have you been able to do any gardening yet? I’m hoping to get out a bit tomorrow if I have time.

  3. I’ve never had much success with houseplants in general, but love Christmas cactus. I knew someone with one that used to bloom from Christmas until Easter, but eventually it got so big it had to be given a new home, so don’t know if it’s still around!

    • I think they do get to a fair size, don’t they? Someone I know said that a relative of theirs had one that was about 1.25 metres across…I’m sure that must be atypical. Or is it? I don’t have room for anything that large, but then again, it must take years for them to attain a size like that. Must be incredible to see when in bloom!

  4. They really require very little care. Just don’t overwater.
    I have one of these that is well over 20 years old. Not the most attractive thing anymore, because they do get woody as they age, but it continues to bloom beautifully. Now if I could just get them to bloom at Christmas, instead of Halloween!

  5. My gosh, they’re gorgeous aren’t they? I did laundry at a place in Sherwood Park for years (because we had a cistern). She had a giant Xmas Cactus too. Sorry I don’t know the secret to success. My cats torture everything to death.

    • Cats and houseplants are often not a good combination, that’s for sure! 🙂 I don’t think zygocacti are toxic, but I’m sure the leaves would be irritating and maybe a bit painful to munch on – it’s a good thing that you don’t have one.

  6. Yes, I too have the Zygocactus or the so called Christmascactus, I got it from my parents a long time ago. First I neglected the cactus because I did not like it, but over the years I have grown up to a plant addict, so I multiplied the cactus and am enjoying the flowers every year again. I am for the first time on your blog, after I read the funny but so true story on Jennifer’s blog. I will be a new follower.

    • Thank you very much, Janneke – I’m so pleased that you enjoyed my story and have decided to follow Flowery Prose! I am happy to hear that you’ve had such great success with your Christmas cacti! I’m looking forward to growing one.

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