Christmas Cactus &
Christmas Cactus &
Christmas Cactus &
Christmas Cactus &
Christmas Cactus &
Christmas Cactus &
Christmas Cactus &
Christmas Cactus &
Christmas Cactus &
Christmas Cactus &
Christmas Cactus &
Christmas Cactus &
Christmas Cactus &

The Christmas cactus, also known as Schlumbergera bridgesii, is a tropical cactus that blooms during Christmas and into the new year and has some of the most exotic-looking flowers in the plant kingdom. It is also known as the holiday cactus, crab cactus, or sometimes labeled as Schlumbergera x buckleyi. These holiday cactus plants make excellent holiday gifts. They usually bloom around the Thanksgiving and Christmas flowering seasons.

The Thanksgiving cactus, Easter cactus, and Christmas cactus are all part of the same family, known as Schlumbergera. These three holiday cacti share a close resemblance but have some important differences in terms of their appearance and care requirements.

Native to the coastal mountains of Southeastern Brazil, these winter plants have fleshy, round-flat stem segments about 12 inches tall and 24 inches wide, resembling flattened leaves with a tiny amount of grooves on each side. The stem segments are also arranged in a cascading manner, creating an attractive hanging or trailing effect.

Christmas Cactus Flowers - Blooming Tips

The Christmas cactus blooms are unique and fascinating because they can produce multiple flowers with a long bloom time. This means that you can see several stunning blooms sprouting from just one point on the cactus from late November all the way to March, creating a breathtaking display of color.

If you don't have a suitable, bright location, don't worry! The Christmas cactus can tolerate lower light conditions, but it may not flower as abundantly. In fact, a period of darkness for about 12–14 hours a day for 6–8 weeks in the fall can encourage blooming. Once flower buds form, move the Schlumbergera bridgesii to a bright, draft-free window. So, you can place your Christmas cactus in a cooler location or a room that is darkened during the evening hours to promote flowering during the holiday season.

The Christmas cactus blooms in response to changes in light and temperature. As the days get shorter and the temperatures cool down, it signals the plant to produce buds and, eventually, flowers. So, the combination of shorter days and cooler temperatures triggers your Schlumbergera bridgesii Christmas cactus to bloom.

Watering needs

The Christmas cactus has specific watering requirements to keep it healthy and thriving. It needs a bit more watering than other regular cacti. It prefers to be kept slightly moist but not overly wet. It's important to water the cactus when the top inch of the soil feels dry to the touch. Be sure to use well-drained soil and a pot with drainage holes to prevent excess water from sitting in the roots, which can lead to rot.

During the growing season, which is typically spring and early summer, you can water the Christmas cactus Schlumbergera bridgesii more frequently, about once a week. However, during the dormant period in fall and winter, you should reduce watering to every two to three weeks or when the soil feels dry.

Remember, it's always better to underwater than overwater the Christmas cactus. Too much water can cause root rot and other issues. So, make sure to observe the moisture level of the soil and adjust your watering accordingly.

Light requirements

When it comes to Christmas cactus light requirements, it thrives in bright, indirect light over direct sun. It prefers a location where it can receive bright, filtered light throughout the day. Direct sunlight can be too intense and may cause the leaves to burn or turn yellow. So, it's best to place your Christmas cactus plant indoors near a window with sheer curtains or in a spot where it can receive bright, indirect light.

If you don't have a suitable, bright location, don't worry! The Christmas cactus can tolerate lower light conditions but may not flower as abundantly. However, a 12–14-hour period of darkness in the fall can encourage blooming. Once flower buds form, move the Schlumbergera bridgesii cactus to a bright, draft-free window to promote flowering during the holiday season.

Remember, finding the right balance of light is key for the Christmas cactus. It enjoys bright, indirect light but can also tolerate lower light conditions. Just be sure to avoid direct sunlight to prevent leaf burns.

General Tips for Growing a Christmas Cactus

  1. Give your Christmas cactus some "me time" in a cool room to encourage blooming.
  2. Create a festive atmosphere by providing it with shorter daylight hours during the blooming season.
  3. Show off its beauty by placing it in a hanging basket or on a high shelf.
  4. Don't be afraid to experiment with different colored varieties, like pink, red, or even yellow.
  5. Enjoy the anticipation of its blooming by misting it with water to increase humidity.
  6. Spread the holiday cheer by propagating new plants from stem cuttings to share with friends.

Optimal Soil & Fertilizer Needs

Christmas cacti prefer very airy, porous, nutrient-rich soil with a pH of 5.6–6.5. Cacti require fast-draining soil that dries completely between waterings. Your soil must have a sandy texture and a low water-holding capacity, just like desert soil.  Soggy soil or wet soil can damage your cactus and contribute to bacterial and fungal rot.

As an alternative, you can create your own potting mix by combining equal portions of perlite, coarse sand, and good natural potting soil. Ideally, you want to use our best soil for Christmas cactus, which is a specialized cactus potting mix that contains 5 natural substrates and organic mycorrhizae to promote the development of a strong root system that helps your Christmas cactus potting mixture thrive.

As for fertilizing, the Christmas cacti Schlumbergera bridgesii prefer minimal feeding. During the growing season, which is typically spring, you can fertilize your cactus once a year with a balanced houseplant fertilizer (5-10-5). During the dormant period in fall and winter, you can reduce or stop fertilizing altogether. This allows your Christmas cactus to rest and prepare for the upcoming blooming season.

Hardiness Zone & More

The Christmas cactus is native to the tropical rainforests of Brazil and can grow both indoors and outdoors. When grown indoors, it prefers a moderate temperature range of 60 to 70 degrees Fahrenheit, making it a perfect indoor plant.

As for hardiness zones, the Christmas cactus is a tropical plant typically grown as a houseplant and is not frost-tolerant. However, if you live in a region with mild winters like USDA hardiness zones 10–12, your Christmas cactus grows outdoors in a shaded or partially shaded area during the warmer months.

It can tolerate temperatures as low as 50°F, but prolonged exposure to colder temperatures can damage the plant. This pink Christmas cactus plant needs low nighttime temperatures between 55°F and 65°F and at least 13 hours of darkness for flowering and should be kept away from heating vents, frequently opened doors, and drafty windows. So, it's best to keep your Christmas cactus in a warm and cozy spot in your home.

In terms of humidity, the Christmas cactus enjoys moderate humidity levels. It can tolerate drier conditions, but higher humidity can promote better growth and prevent the edges of the leaves from drying out. To increase humidity around your Christmas cactus, you can place a tray filled with water near the Schlumbergera bridgesii or use a humidifier in the room.

For Christmas cactus propagation, you can start by taking stem cuttings. Simply snip a healthy segment of the cactus with a clean pair of scissors. Allow a day or two for the cut end to callus over. Then, place the cutting in a well-draining potting mix and lightly water it. Keep the soil slightly moist and provide bright, indirect light. With time and proper care, the cutting will develop roots and grow into a new Christmas cactus. It's a rewarding way to expand your collection or share the beauty of these lovely holiday plants with friends and family!

Overall, the Christmas cactus, Schlumbergera bridgesii, is a beautiful and unique cactus plant that brings joy and festive vibes to our homes during the holiday season. With its striking flowers and easy-care requirements, it's a popular choice for plant lovers and beginners alike. Whether you're propagating new plants, dealing with common pests, or simply enjoying its vibrant blooms, the Christmas cactus is a delightful addition to any plant collection. So, let's embrace the holiday spirit and continue to cherish the beauty of the Schlumbergera bridgesii Christmas cactus!

Bloom Season Winter
Botanical Name Schlumbergera bridgesii
Common Name Christmas Cactus
Dormancy Winter
Family Cactaceae
Flower Color Pink, red, salmon, soft purple, lavender
Genus Schlumbergera
Growth Habit Trailing, hanging
Growth Rate Slow
Hardiness Zone 10, 11, 12
Mature Size 12 in. tall, 24 in. wide
Native Area Brazil
Plant Type Perennial cactus
Propagation By division, cuttings
Resistance Drought tolerant, pest resistant, heat tolerant
Soil PH 6.5, Acidic, Neutral
Soil Type specialized cactus potting soil
Special Features Showy flowers
Sun Exposure Full sun, partial shade
Toxicity Safe for humans, friendly to cats, friendly to dogs
Watering Needs Low

Pests & Common Problems of Christmas Cactus

Christmas cacti are susceptible to a few common pests and problems. The most common problems are: 

Mealybugs: These tiny white insects can infest this Bridgesii cactus and leave behind a cottony residue. Use a cotton swab dipped in rubbing alcohol to remove them. 

Spider mites: These pests are very small and can cause yellowing leaves and webbing. Regularly misting your Christmas Cacti and wiping the leaves can help prevent infestations. 

Root rot: Overwatering or poorly draining soil can lead to root rot. Make sure to let the soil dry out between waterings and use well-draining soil to avoid this problem.  

Bud drop: Sudden changes in temperature, too much light on, or watering can cause the buds to drop before they bloom. Try to maintain consistent conditions for your cactus Christmas tree. 

Leaf yellowing: This can be caused by overwatering, underwatering, or too much direct sunlight on tropical pink-yellow Christmas cactus plants. Adjust your watering schedule and provide bright, indirect light to your garden centers to prevent this issue. 

Remember, keeping an eye out for pests, providing proper care over watering, and maintaining consistent conditions will help keep your Christmas cactus healthy and thriving! 

FAQs - Christmas Cactus Plant

How long do Christmas cacti live? 

The Christmas cactus can live for many years with proper care and attention. Some Christmas cacti have been known to live for 20-30 years or more! With the right conditions, regular watering, and occasional fertilization, you can enjoy the beauty of your Christmas cactus for a long time.  

Even though it might stop blooming after that, that doesn't necessarily mean it's dead and needs to be thrown away. 

Is the Christmas cactus an indoor plant? 

Yes, the Christmas cactus is primarily an indoor plant. It thrives in the moderate temperatures and indirect light found indoors, making it a perfect addition to your indoor plant collection. Just make sure to place it near a window where it can receive bright, indirect light.  

Instead, this is native to tropical rainforests, where it grows on tree branches and soaks up the high humidity, dappled sunlight, and warm temperatures. 

Are Christmas cactus poisonous to cats? 

No, Christmas cacti are considered non-toxic to cats. However, it's always a good idea to monitor your pets around plants and ensure they don't chew on them. 

How to take care of a Christmas Cactus? 

To take care of a Christmas cactus, you'll want to provide it with bright, indirect light, such as near a window. Keep the soil slightly moist, but avoid overwatering, as it can lead to root rot. During the blooming period, which is usually around winter, you can give it a balanced houseplant fertilizer every month or so.  

Additionally, maintain a moderate temperature between 60-70°F. Lastly, be sure to prune and remove any dead or wilted stems to promote healthy new growth throughout. With these simple care tips, your Christmas cactus will thrive and bring you joy for many holiday seasons to come! 

What is the Difference Between a Christmas cactus and a Thanksgiving cactus? 

The Christmas cactus and Thanksgiving cactus have distinct characteristics. In terms of leaf shape, the Christmas cactus ‘Schlumbergera bridgesii’ has smoother and rounded segments, while the Thanksgiving cactus ‘Schlumbergera truncata’ has more pointed and claw-like segments.  

Another difference lies in their bloom seasons, with the Christmas cactus blooming around Christmas time and the Thanksgiving cactus blooming around Thanksgiving (Mid November). 

How long do Christmas cactus bloom for? 

The Christmas cactus usually blooms for a period of around 4 to 6 weeks, with each blossom lasting between six and nine days. After flowering, pinch off enough of each stem to create a consistent habit before pruning the plant back. During this time, you can enjoy its vibrant and festive flowers. It's a lovely sight to behold during the holiday season! 

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Christmas Cactus 'Schlumbergera bridgesii'

sku: 1794

2 reviews
Regular price$ 11.29
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Please note: All Landscape Ready plants that are in a 6-inch pot or larger WILL NOT come with a pot as it will be shipped bare root.

  • In stock, ready to ship
  • Inventory on the way

Please note: Our large plants are many years old, and as a result, they might have minor scaring but will arrive 100% healthy and looking great.

Please note: Our large plants are shipped bare root. They are also many years old, and as a result, they might have minor scaring but will arrive healthy and looking great.

If you live in a cold climate and are expecting temperatures below 40 degrees within the next five days after placing your order, we highly recommend adding a heat pack to your order. If you do not order a heat pack, we do not send one with your order.

BUY HEAT PACKS HERE

**FREE HEAT PACK WITH ORDERS OVER $50 before taxes and shipping- BY REQUEST ONLY, PLEASE MAKE A NOTE ON YOUR ORDER.

To prevent plants from freezing while in transit, orders placed for areas with extreme severe freezing temperatures will be held for shipment until it is safe to ship.

Plants that are in 3.5" pots and smaller will be shipped in its pot to prevent any damage to the roots. Any plant that is 6" and larger WILL NOT come with a pot as it will be shipped bare root.

Depending on the species and season, you will receive a very similar plant to the one in the picture. It may or may not be blooming at the time of your purchase.

We ship via USPS Priority Mail, and we calculate the shipping cost based on the weight and volume of your purchase. Care instructions are included in every package you order. Please allow us up to 3 business days to process your order. Depending on your location, we will ship the plants on a certain day to avoid transit time during weekends or holidays. If you wish to receive your order on a specific date, or have special instructions, please add a note on your order. If you have any questions or comments, please feel free to contact us at any time.

  • Description
  • Key Plant Features

The Christmas cactus, also known as Schlumbergera bridgesii, is a tropical cactus that blooms during Christmas and into the new year and has some of the most exotic-looking flowers in the plant kingdom. It is also known as the holiday cactus, crab cactus, or sometimes labeled as Schlumbergera x buckleyi. These holiday cactus plants make excellent holiday gifts. They usually bloom around the Thanksgiving and Christmas flowering seasons.

The Thanksgiving cactus, Easter cactus, and Christmas cactus are all part of the same family, known as Schlumbergera. These three holiday cacti share a close resemblance but have some important differences in terms of their appearance and care requirements.

Native to the coastal mountains of Southeastern Brazil, these winter plants have fleshy, round-flat stem segments about 12 inches tall and 24 inches wide, resembling flattened leaves with a tiny amount of grooves on each side. The stem segments are also arranged in a cascading manner, creating an attractive hanging or trailing effect.

Christmas Cactus Flowers - Blooming Tips

The Christmas cactus blooms are unique and fascinating because they can produce multiple flowers with a long bloom time. This means that you can see several stunning blooms sprouting from just one point on the cactus from late November all the way to March, creating a breathtaking display of color.

If you don't have a suitable, bright location, don't worry! The Christmas cactus can tolerate lower light conditions, but it may not flower as abundantly. In fact, a period of darkness for about 12–14 hours a day for 6–8 weeks in the fall can encourage blooming. Once flower buds form, move the Schlumbergera bridgesii to a bright, draft-free window. So, you can place your Christmas cactus in a cooler location or a room that is darkened during the evening hours to promote flowering during the holiday season.

The Christmas cactus blooms in response to changes in light and temperature. As the days get shorter and the temperatures cool down, it signals the plant to produce buds and, eventually, flowers. So, the combination of shorter days and cooler temperatures triggers your Schlumbergera bridgesii Christmas cactus to bloom.

Watering needs

The Christmas cactus has specific watering requirements to keep it healthy and thriving. It needs a bit more watering than other regular cacti. It prefers to be kept slightly moist but not overly wet. It's important to water the cactus when the top inch of the soil feels dry to the touch. Be sure to use well-drained soil and a pot with drainage holes to prevent excess water from sitting in the roots, which can lead to rot.

During the growing season, which is typically spring and early summer, you can water the Christmas cactus Schlumbergera bridgesii more frequently, about once a week. However, during the dormant period in fall and winter, you should reduce watering to every two to three weeks or when the soil feels dry.

Remember, it's always better to underwater than overwater the Christmas cactus. Too much water can cause root rot and other issues. So, make sure to observe the moisture level of the soil and adjust your watering accordingly.

Light requirements

When it comes to Christmas cactus light requirements, it thrives in bright, indirect light over direct sun. It prefers a location where it can receive bright, filtered light throughout the day. Direct sunlight can be too intense and may cause the leaves to burn or turn yellow. So, it's best to place your Christmas cactus plant indoors near a window with sheer curtains or in a spot where it can receive bright, indirect light.

If you don't have a suitable, bright location, don't worry! The Christmas cactus can tolerate lower light conditions but may not flower as abundantly. However, a 12–14-hour period of darkness in the fall can encourage blooming. Once flower buds form, move the Schlumbergera bridgesii cactus to a bright, draft-free window to promote flowering during the holiday season.

Remember, finding the right balance of light is key for the Christmas cactus. It enjoys bright, indirect light but can also tolerate lower light conditions. Just be sure to avoid direct sunlight to prevent leaf burns.

General Tips for Growing a Christmas Cactus

  1. Give your Christmas cactus some "me time" in a cool room to encourage blooming.
  2. Create a festive atmosphere by providing it with shorter daylight hours during the blooming season.
  3. Show off its beauty by placing it in a hanging basket or on a high shelf.
  4. Don't be afraid to experiment with different colored varieties, like pink, red, or even yellow.
  5. Enjoy the anticipation of its blooming by misting it with water to increase humidity.
  6. Spread the holiday cheer by propagating new plants from stem cuttings to share with friends.

Optimal Soil & Fertilizer Needs

Christmas cacti prefer very airy, porous, nutrient-rich soil with a pH of 5.6–6.5. Cacti require fast-draining soil that dries completely between waterings. Your soil must have a sandy texture and a low water-holding capacity, just like desert soil.  Soggy soil or wet soil can damage your cactus and contribute to bacterial and fungal rot.

As an alternative, you can create your own potting mix by combining equal portions of perlite, coarse sand, and good natural potting soil. Ideally, you want to use our best soil for Christmas cactus, which is a specialized cactus potting mix that contains 5 natural substrates and organic mycorrhizae to promote the development of a strong root system that helps your Christmas cactus potting mixture thrive.

As for fertilizing, the Christmas cacti Schlumbergera bridgesii prefer minimal feeding. During the growing season, which is typically spring, you can fertilize your cactus once a year with a balanced houseplant fertilizer (5-10-5). During the dormant period in fall and winter, you can reduce or stop fertilizing altogether. This allows your Christmas cactus to rest and prepare for the upcoming blooming season.

Hardiness Zone & More

The Christmas cactus is native to the tropical rainforests of Brazil and can grow both indoors and outdoors. When grown indoors, it prefers a moderate temperature range of 60 to 70 degrees Fahrenheit, making it a perfect indoor plant.

As for hardiness zones, the Christmas cactus is a tropical plant typically grown as a houseplant and is not frost-tolerant. However, if you live in a region with mild winters like USDA hardiness zones 10–12, your Christmas cactus grows outdoors in a shaded or partially shaded area during the warmer months.

It can tolerate temperatures as low as 50°F, but prolonged exposure to colder temperatures can damage the plant. This pink Christmas cactus plant needs low nighttime temperatures between 55°F and 65°F and at least 13 hours of darkness for flowering and should be kept away from heating vents, frequently opened doors, and drafty windows. So, it's best to keep your Christmas cactus in a warm and cozy spot in your home.

In terms of humidity, the Christmas cactus enjoys moderate humidity levels. It can tolerate drier conditions, but higher humidity can promote better growth and prevent the edges of the leaves from drying out. To increase humidity around your Christmas cactus, you can place a tray filled with water near the Schlumbergera bridgesii or use a humidifier in the room.

For Christmas cactus propagation, you can start by taking stem cuttings. Simply snip a healthy segment of the cactus with a clean pair of scissors. Allow a day or two for the cut end to callus over. Then, place the cutting in a well-draining potting mix and lightly water it. Keep the soil slightly moist and provide bright, indirect light. With time and proper care, the cutting will develop roots and grow into a new Christmas cactus. It's a rewarding way to expand your collection or share the beauty of these lovely holiday plants with friends and family!

Overall, the Christmas cactus, Schlumbergera bridgesii, is a beautiful and unique cactus plant that brings joy and festive vibes to our homes during the holiday season. With its striking flowers and easy-care requirements, it's a popular choice for plant lovers and beginners alike. Whether you're propagating new plants, dealing with common pests, or simply enjoying its vibrant blooms, the Christmas cactus is a delightful addition to any plant collection. So, let's embrace the holiday spirit and continue to cherish the beauty of the Schlumbergera bridgesii Christmas cactus!

Bloom Season Winter
Botanical Name Schlumbergera bridgesii
Common Name Christmas Cactus
Dormancy Winter
Family Cactaceae
Flower Color Pink, red, salmon, soft purple, lavender
Genus Schlumbergera
Growth Habit Trailing, hanging
Growth Rate Slow
Hardiness Zone 10, 11, 12
Mature Size 12 in. tall, 24 in. wide
Native Area Brazil
Plant Type Perennial cactus
Propagation By division, cuttings
Resistance Drought tolerant, pest resistant, heat tolerant
Soil PH 6.5, Acidic, Neutral
Soil Type specialized cactus potting soil
Special Features Showy flowers
Sun Exposure Full sun, partial shade
Toxicity Safe for humans, friendly to cats, friendly to dogs
Watering Needs Low

Pests & Common Problems of Christmas Cactus

Christmas cacti are susceptible to a few common pests and problems. The most common problems are: 

Mealybugs: These tiny white insects can infest this Bridgesii cactus and leave behind a cottony residue. Use a cotton swab dipped in rubbing alcohol to remove them. 

Spider mites: These pests are very small and can cause yellowing leaves and webbing. Regularly misting your Christmas Cacti and wiping the leaves can help prevent infestations. 

Root rot: Overwatering or poorly draining soil can lead to root rot. Make sure to let the soil dry out between waterings and use well-draining soil to avoid this problem.  

Bud drop: Sudden changes in temperature, too much light on, or watering can cause the buds to drop before they bloom. Try to maintain consistent conditions for your cactus Christmas tree. 

Leaf yellowing: This can be caused by overwatering, underwatering, or too much direct sunlight on tropical pink-yellow Christmas cactus plants. Adjust your watering schedule and provide bright, indirect light to your garden centers to prevent this issue. 

Remember, keeping an eye out for pests, providing proper care over watering, and maintaining consistent conditions will help keep your Christmas cactus healthy and thriving! 

FAQs - Christmas Cactus Plant

How long do Christmas cacti live? 

The Christmas cactus can live for many years with proper care and attention. Some Christmas cacti have been known to live for 20-30 years or more! With the right conditions, regular watering, and occasional fertilization, you can enjoy the beauty of your Christmas cactus for a long time.  

Even though it might stop blooming after that, that doesn't necessarily mean it's dead and needs to be thrown away. 

Is the Christmas cactus an indoor plant? 

Yes, the Christmas cactus is primarily an indoor plant. It thrives in the moderate temperatures and indirect light found indoors, making it a perfect addition to your indoor plant collection. Just make sure to place it near a window where it can receive bright, indirect light.  

Instead, this is native to tropical rainforests, where it grows on tree branches and soaks up the high humidity, dappled sunlight, and warm temperatures. 

Are Christmas cactus poisonous to cats? 

No, Christmas cacti are considered non-toxic to cats. However, it's always a good idea to monitor your pets around plants and ensure they don't chew on them. 

How to take care of a Christmas Cactus? 

To take care of a Christmas cactus, you'll want to provide it with bright, indirect light, such as near a window. Keep the soil slightly moist, but avoid overwatering, as it can lead to root rot. During the blooming period, which is usually around winter, you can give it a balanced houseplant fertilizer every month or so.  

Additionally, maintain a moderate temperature between 60-70°F. Lastly, be sure to prune and remove any dead or wilted stems to promote healthy new growth throughout. With these simple care tips, your Christmas cactus will thrive and bring you joy for many holiday seasons to come! 

What is the Difference Between a Christmas cactus and a Thanksgiving cactus? 

The Christmas cactus and Thanksgiving cactus have distinct characteristics. In terms of leaf shape, the Christmas cactus ‘Schlumbergera bridgesii’ has smoother and rounded segments, while the Thanksgiving cactus ‘Schlumbergera truncata’ has more pointed and claw-like segments.  

Another difference lies in their bloom seasons, with the Christmas cactus blooming around Christmas time and the Thanksgiving cactus blooming around Thanksgiving (Mid November). 

How long do Christmas cactus bloom for? 

The Christmas cactus usually blooms for a period of around 4 to 6 weeks, with each blossom lasting between six and nine days. After flowering, pinch off enough of each stem to create a consistent habit before pruning the plant back. During this time, you can enjoy its vibrant and festive flowers. It's a lovely sight to behold during the holiday season! 

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