My Christmas cactus: blooming for the third time in 12 months

About a zillion websites explain how to make a Christmas cactus bloom.  It is tricky, they say, and the plant must have at least 12 hours a day of absolute darkness.  Water must be limited.  Cool temperatures are necessary.

My Christmas cactus just finished blooming for the third time in the past twelve months, and I’ve done none of the above to make it bloom.  It sits on the windowsill in my kitchen where it receives indirect sunlight all day and fluorescent light until I go to bed around midnight.  I water it once a week and keep our house at a comfortable temperature, certainly not as cool 50-55 degrees F. (12 C.) as the experts suggest.

It gets no special treatment at all, and yet it bloomed last June, last January, and now again beginning in late April…

Christmas cactus buds

Christmas cactus_

Christmas cactus 2


“We cannot choose the day or time when we will fully bloom. It happens in its own time.”  (Denis Waitley)

4 Comments Add yours

  1. Barbara Wilson says:

    I have never heard of the requirement for a Christmas cactus to bloom it needs a certain number of hours of darkness. I always thought it was the change in seasons and the amount of light they got that triggered their blooms. Perhaps the newer hybrids are different. I would move mine from a sunny window to a less sunny spot and they would start their budding process.


    1. My Christmas cactus has always been on the windowsill in the kitchen and has bloomed at least once a year. It was this year that was different, with it blooming 3 times in 12 months. I did an internet search to see if 3 times was unusual and came across many websites that said the plant needed special treatment and darkness to make it bud and bloom. Well, mine never gets special treatment. 🙂


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