Christmas cactus

Flamboyant colour during dark days

The ingenious Christmas cactus is not actually a cactus at all, but a succulent . It’s also known as Schlumbergera, but you don’t need to remember that. What is good to remember is: short days, beautiful flowers. 

Christmas cactus flowers, thejoyofplants

Colours and shapes

The Christmas cactus is a fine example of Nature’s handiwork. Sturdy flat leaves with curved spikes are strung together, finishing with the flower buds. At the end of autumn or the start of winter the buds unfold and surprise you with purple, red, white, orange or pink flowers. The Christmas cactus makes a very good hanging plant, allowing you to admire the flowers even better.

Symbolism

Officially the Christmas cactus does not have any symbolic meaning. But because the plant is not afraid to commit to a relationship and can be your companion for 20 to 30 years, we think ‘loyalty’ would be a good symbolism.

Origin

The Christmas cactus originates from the Brazilian rainforest, where the humidity is high. There the plant grows very idiosyncratically on tree trunks. It brings that idiosyncrasy into your home, where it’s quite firm about its position and care routine. It’s best not to move your Christmas cactus, because it might shed its buds in protest.