Christmas cactus rooting...

Chargoth(z8 East TX)August 16, 2006

I have some Christmas Cactus cuttings I bought recently, that I have put in dirt..Do I need to keep them moist? Any other information that will help them to root?

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Personally, I have never kept the soil constantly moist when rooting Christmas cactus cuttings for fear of rot, seeing the cutting don't have any roots.
I water once, then let the soil pretty much dry before giving it anymore, and CC cuttings can send out roots rather quickly if taken care of right.

I like keeping the cuttings in small living conditions, a bunch of cuttings in a small somewhat "cramped" glass of water, or a small pot with fast draining soil set in decent indirect light.That's all I ever did to root them.

I have some cuttings right now that have rooted in water a while ago and REALLY need a pot.
When I finally get around to potting them up (maybe this week) the pot won't be much bigger than the glass of water they are currently in that is now filled with roots, so the transition from water to soil shouldn't be a problem, as long as the pot is not too big, and soil not heavy.

Billy Rae

    Bookmark   August 17, 2006 at 1:07AM
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I put my Christmas cactus cuttings in soil (cactus soil w/ perline) about 2 weeks ago. Now they look like they are wilting; I checked on of them and there is no sign of root growth. Should I put them in a glass of water to root?

    Bookmark   August 31, 2006 at 7:46AM
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Even though you can root Christmas cactus in soil or water, it might be easier for you to first root them in water. There is always a possibility for rot with rootless cuttings in soil.
Your cuttings sound like they need water now or have rooted perhaps if they are rootless and already wrinkled.

I'd take off the bottom couple leaves (they could also be rotted) and put them into about an inch or two of water, keeping the water level the same (topped)
When the roots get to be about an inch long,then you go ahead and pot them up.
You can safely cramp them into a small pot so each root end of the cuttings are almost touching (that's what I do)

I finally got around to taking the cuttings that rooted in water (a few branched cuttings 7"-8" in length) and potted them up into a 3" clay pot and they doing very well.
I plan on giving it to my sister who lost almost everything in a flood, including her Christmas cactus.

Billy Rae

    Bookmark   September 1, 2006 at 4:49PM
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If I see a piece of any of my holiday cacti broken off, I just stick it right back into the soil around the mother plant. No waiting for it to dry out, just stick it in there and it roots fine. In fact, I pay very little attention to these plants other than repotting every few years and fertilizing occasionally, and they seem to thrive. They get mostly rain water all summer, after sticking broken pieces in, I forget about them, and then next time I think to check on the plants I have a whole new section growing.

    Bookmark   September 1, 2006 at 9:11PM
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Yep, that's another way to root them. You have reminded me that I had a few broken CC pieces that have rooted during the summer in an outdoor potted plant. Better tend to it before the SNOW flies! Hate that (S) word!

Billy Rae

    Bookmark   September 3, 2006 at 3:12PM
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I potted a cutting of my mom's christmas cactus recenently and have it sitting in my windowsill. If it needs shade let me know. Also I need to know if I need to water it once a week, or when the soil is dry.

    Bookmark   November 6, 2006 at 11:04PM
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If the cuttings don't have roots they cannot take up water and watering the soil will only promote rot IMHO. You can mist them lightly to keep them from drying out. A number of people have commented that CC cuttings seem to root well with a "nurse plant". This is what Ines is talking about--just sticking the cuttings back into the pot with the mother plant. Of course if you don't have the mother plant thats not an option. But you could try putting them in with a spider plant, philodendron, etc.

    Bookmark   November 7, 2006 at 12:18AM
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Ok thank you I have now done that and hopefully it will thrive. Also I have a cactus by which I dont know the common name. I found the name Mammillaria Rhodantha to be it's scientific name on a cacti guide but sadly it appears to have base rot. I fear that my only options are to either cut it in half and try to root it or just throw it away.The cactus is about two inches wide and four inches tall. Can it survive this kind of operation???

    Bookmark   November 7, 2006 at 9:37PM
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Christmas Cactus sections are THE EASIEST to root...and they need no roots, no buddy plant, no family plant, no neighbor plant......they do it all for themselves by simply putting a piece...make it consist of 3 or 4 sections...and place at least two of them into soil that is composed of
peat moss/vermiculite.
Or....peat moss/potting soil..having vermiculite in it.
Dust the bottom with some rooting hormone.....or not.

Just stick it into the soil, water it and put it into a sunny window. Keep it damp....but not wet or soggy.
Water to drainage and don't let it sit in that drainage water for any length of time.
Allow at least 3 or 4 weeks for that to form roots.
When propagating any plant by cuttings, it is always a good idea to root as many as is practical....for insurance.

A 4" pot I think is an ideal size.....but a 2" will do in a pinch. The 4" will accommodate more sections more easily.

    Bookmark   November 9, 2006 at 8:22PM
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Late October/early November, I rooted some cuttings of CC in AV potting soil. I bagged them in ziploc bags and left them at the kitchen windowsill for three weeks. Now, I have some buds forming on some of the sections! Isn't that wonderful? Here's a pic of my cuttings.

Xuan (temporarily in East Bay, Calif.)

    Bookmark   December 4, 2006 at 1:28PM
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Xuan, That's fantastic!

    Bookmark   December 4, 2006 at 7:38PM
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Congratulations! Great job! You GOT to love them!

Happy holidays!


    Bookmark   December 5, 2006 at 7:23PM
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Yeah... I'm really happy! :-)
Now I'm waiting for the blooms and then will pot them up into a hanging basket when they've done flowering.


    Bookmark   December 5, 2006 at 11:15PM
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Hi,I have a 6 year old zygo christmas cactus and a piece snapped off just today,.I was wonder what to put it in to reroot the piece so I can replant it,the roots entirely came off the whole peiece,the plant was raized from a baby and is now bout 3 foot wide from expanding but the section the fell off was a end piece with bout 20 pieces connected.please mail me if anyone knows,thanks

    Bookmark   August 4, 2011 at 4:19PM
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