Everyone thinks caring for potted cactus indoors is easy to do. Basically that is true but it you want to make sure that they look as good as the day you purchased them, then you need to follow a few simple rules.
Watering - you probably think that since potted cacti is from the desert all you need to do is water once a week and it will be fine. But, what you may not know is that it's better to water your potted cactus every 3 to 5 weeks. They grow best when allowed to fully dry out between watering. During the summer while growing it's best to water every 3 weeks. In the winter when dormant go every 5 weeks. We know it sounds horrific but trust us it works.
Sunlight - Well of course they love full direct sunlight. A potted cactus can vary depending on the type of cacti but generally this is tried and true. If a cactus is turning yellow, or brown that means too much sun. If it is reaching out towards the sun then that means too little.
Potting soil - Shop your local nursery for the best soil for acactus in a flowerpot. They look loose soil that is fast draining. If you can't find it then mix some perlite into your soil so that it is not compact.
Containers - As you already know you don't need a deep container for a potted cactus. The root system is very shallow so a garden bowl or bonsai pot will work perfectly. Now that doesn't mean you can't go with a bit of style and use any size you wish. It just means you DON'T have to.
See now that doesn't sound so hard and is basically pretty simple. Pay attention to your area and where you have placed the potted cactus. You may need to experiment a bit on different locations but once you find the perfect spot your cactus will let you know.
Seeing a Christmas cactus in full bloom is stunningly beautiful. In Winter when everything outside is grey, white & cold the burst of bright color from a potted Christmas cactus is a joy to see.
The stark differences are amazing. As a gift this potted cactus will last much longer than a flower arrangement. Blooming near the holidays makes them wonderful gift and great home decorations.
If you choose to buy one before October, make sure that it doesn't have any visible buds. This will ensure that it is still in dormancy and will be getting ready to set blooms for the holiday. The key to getting the best blooms and a long living plant is to keep your planted Christmas cactus located in a well lit room out of direct sunlight.
In the fall, a potted Christmas cactus will require 12 hours of darkness. It's best to keep your Christmas cactus in a room that has bright, natural, indirect light and choose a room that is not artificially lit in the evening. This will encourage it to set buds.
Water the pot every 3 days depending on how humid your climate it. Indoor winter air is dry and temps are fairly even so watering one a week will be enough to keep your Christmas cactus happy. Mist regularly and don't let the soil dry out. Water when the top inch or two becomes dry.
The potted Christmas cactus loves humidity so keep it away from hot sun. In the Fall, reduce watering to stimulate blooming. Use cactus or succulent soil mix as soil. In the Summer, bring your planter outside and set in a shady location.
Fertilize in the Spring and Summer with a balanced fertilizer. Be aware, if you notice buds falling off before opening, it means you are over watering.
You would think that growing a potted cactus is super simple. We mean like how hard can it be, right? Stick a cactus in some soil and all done. Well unfortunately that is not the case. Even though potted cactus is rather easy to grow and virtually maintenance free, you still need to know a few things to make sure you have success.
Several hours of sunlight each day and well draining soil are vital for a cactus to thrive. There are several varieties available to grow indoors potted which can add beauty to any windowsill with a lot of work.
Select the planter. Shallow and wide is best since they have short roots. We like garden bowls and bulb pans. Make sure the pot has drain holes. Cactus don't like sitting in standing water. If your pot doesn't have a drain hole then they need to be drilled.
Purchase potting soil for cactus or succulents. They have gravel or sand in them to help with draining and nitrogen and phosphorus for indoor growing.
The best varieties for indoor planted cactus are Prickly Pear, Rose Pincushion, Euphorbia dn Rebuita.
Place the cactus in the pot semi filled with soil. Wrap it with paper towel or wear garden gloves. Once placed then fill the remainder of the pot with soil. Place a layer of gravel or sand on top and around the base of the cactus.
Put the planter in a sunny warm location like a window where it can get 4 to 6 hours of sunlight daily. Water as needed around once a month. Fertilize once or twice a year using houseplant food for cactus.
Not to difficult. Remember DO NOT OVER WATER. And, there you go!