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Is this Rhipsalis??

Posted by gramadea z5 central MI (My Page) on
Mon, Nov 26, 12 at 21:45

Hi everyone. I have another plant that I can't seem to ID.
I have been told conflicting things so of course had to come to this forum for the answer:o))
First guess was pencil cactus (Euphorbia)
Second guess was mistletoe cactus (Rhipsalis cassutha)
What do you all think? Thanks.
Here is a photo of the whole plant, followed by close ups of the lower section and upper section.
NOID cactus? #4
This is a close up of the lower part of the plant..the branches are ribbed and have spines. The original cutting looked like this when I got it. Some of this growth is straight and some is a bit of a spiral.
NOID cactus? #4 lower
Here is what the upper portion looks like...smooth branches and no spines.
NOID cactus? #4 upper
Sorry about how large these photos are, I can't seem to make them smaller. Anyway...any light you can shed on this ID will be greatly appreciated.


Follow-Up Postings:

RE: Is this Rhipsalis??


Hatiora (Rhipsalis) salicorniodes, isn't it?

RE: Is this Rhipsalis??

Yes as Charis mentioned it seems to be "The Drunkards Dream" Yellow flowering would be what you can expect.

RE: Is this Rhipsalis??

It looks like you have two different plants in the pot..

RE: Is this Rhipsalis??


Large photos are great...easier to see detail, especially if looking for ID.

But if you want to post small ones, just make sure you choose photo in photobucket (click on it first), then you'll have choice of HTML code (on right side of the screen): HTML code or HTML thumb code. 1st will post large photo, 2nd will post thumbnail photo.

I use thumb if posting many at the same time.
Good photos in your album.


RE: Is this Rhipsalis??

Hatiora (Rhipsalis) salicorniodes certainly seems right to me.
Thanks so much. Poor thing has been getting the wrong care up to this point as it was given to me as a cutting and mis-identified. I wonder it is still alive:o( I will remedy this now.

I still am curious about the differences in the growth at the bottom and top. I realize that some plants do change with maturity. Could be just that??

Another thing...H. salicorniodes appears to be a trailing form and my plant is for the most part upright. Could this be because I am/was giving it too much direct sunlight? Will it begin to trail with growth?

Thanks again and I will try not to be too much of a pest around here. But there is sooooo much mis-information on the internet and asking you guys usually results in the "Right Stuff". Now I can take better care of this plant.


PS..I was worried about the large photos as some groups/forums frown on them. I guess not here though.
You are right Rina, when needing ID the bigger and clearer the better. Thanks.

RE: Is this Rhipsalis??

Wow I got the same one from my sister and thought I had 2 differant cacti lol thanks for the knowledge everyone

RE: Is this Rhipsalis??

Those are definitely 2 different plants.

I agree about the first being Hatiora salicornioides for the 1st & have no idea what the 2nd is, but it's some kind of tropical cactus (the fine hairs mark it as a cactus here, not just a succulent).

While upright looking now, w/ time & as it becomes heavier, it'll start to trail & hang (the Hatiora).

They look healthy to me.

RE: Is this Rhipsalis??

I think it is only one species. Small growths on H. salicornioides often show hairy new stems. Either nothing will grow from them or the growth that elongates will assume the normal upside down bottle growth. The flowers are small, but look like gold buttons in the spring. The ones here bloom about Feb-April. Occasional bloom into June. They make a a small weak bush that is pendent. The appearance will change if you give them fertilizer, making very fat ovoid growth with a weak neck. A nice plant, and one of my favorite Rhipsalis.

RE: Is this Rhipsalis??

I thought maybe two plants also but it is all growing from the same cutting. The growth that has the spines (middle photo) doesn't seem to be growing. It has been just like that for months while the other branches are growing. Should I remove the growth with the spines? It seems healthy...maybe a little limper than the rest...just not doing anything. On most of the plant, the ends of the stem sections (don't know the proper term) anyway the sections that look like tiny bottles. A tan-ish fuzzy tuft appears and new growth extends from this tuft. On the sections with spines...these tufts have not developed. Any ideas?? This plant is two years old from a two inch cutting right now. How old will it need to be to flower? Thanks.


RE: Is this Rhipsalis??

gramadea, the weird growth is harmless. It just shows how plastic the form of the Rhipsalis genus is. Under different conditions, the shape is different. Young growth frequently grows rampant and different. Many flat species will make fuzzy round growth, but new regularly-shaped stems soon follow. Round, naked (or virtually naked) species that make spiny small growth often have that growth stop and live in suspended animation.

I planted 2 species together, labeled micrantha and eliptica. 2 different looking species. After 8 or 10 years together, the micrantha has widened, and the eliptica has several different shapes to the leaves. Some look like the classic R. crispata, some with long crenelated edges. The micrantha sunburned last summer when I removed a branch that was shading the pot, but the other one in the pot never scarred.

One problem with growing Rhipsalis is that they almost all inevitably hang. The weight of the vegetable matter is always greater than the pot. they fall and drop all the time, and this will do 2 things. One, generate lots of cuttings. Two, give it a pruning that might not be based on esthetics.

Something that will serve you and the plant well for years is to horribly over pot them. Unlike desert cacti, these are not hurt by moist soil for long periods. Moist, not wet. A hanging coir basket with strong chains is recommended for the bigger species like monocantha, paradoxa (under whatever name it is) and houlletianum. These grow fast, and you can get 6 ft. green stems in a few years. Not having to mess with them for a few years is a blessing. The hanging basket also precludes overwatering.

R. salicornioides makes a thin screen of a plant. They grow well in a 16 inch hanging with something like R. pachyptera or one of the other flat stem species. R. teres also grows sort of scrawny for some time, so the ones with shorter internodal length but are round, will fill in better. If you like one species to a pot, that looks fine too.

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