A Christmas cactus is a lovely plant to have in your house. The plant will usually bloom during winter and display beautiful flowers during Christmas. There are different types of Christmas cactus colors for every decor.
So, how long do the Christmas cactus bloom last?
Christmas cactus blooms typically last between 4 to 6 weeks. The length of the blooming period can vary depending on various factors, including the age of the plant, growing conditions, and the variety of the Christmas cactus.
The Christmas cactus usually starts bloom during fall in late November or early December. The plant will form buds that bloom into beautiful flowers that last for five to six weeks.
Fortunately, you can still enjoy the beautiful blossoms even after the Christmas season by encouraging the Christmas cactus to bloom again. The most important thing when forcing a Christmas cactus to bloom off its blooming season is providing similar conditions to fall weather.
Give the plant longer nights of about 12 to 16 hours daily for six to eight weeks, reduce watering to enable the cactus to enter dormancy, and keep it at 50 – 55 degrees Fahrenheit.
The buds will take 6 – 8 weeks to form; they then open into flowers. So if you intend to ‘force’ the Christmas cactus to bloom during the Easter holiday, count 8 – 10 weeks before and start keeping the Christmas cactus in the dark.
How do I Keep My Christmas Cactus Blooming?
A Christmas cactus will bloom after about 6 to 8 weeks of keeping it in the dark and providing other essential conditions. When the buds finally emerge, you no longer have to keep the plant in the dark.
You simply need to maintain proper conditions for the plant to keep blooming. Otherwise, the flowers will fall off or wilt.
Here is what to do:
1. Increase watering
During fall or when you force the Christmas cactus to bloom, you must cut down on watering to allow the plant to enter dormancy. However, you must increase the watering schedule slightly when the Christmas cactus starts flowering but without overwatering.
You can water the plant once every two weeks or when the top one-third of the soil feels dry to the touch. If you let the plant dry out, it will drop the flowers. If the weather is too cold or your house has low humidity, you can spray the leaves with water.
Christmas cactus loves humid air, so misting the plant will help increase moisture around the plant. Alternatively, place the plant on a pebble tray half filled with water. This will boost humidity around the plant as the water evaporates from the tray.
2. Provide bright indirect light
After the buds have formed, you no longer need to keep the Christmas cactus in the dark. You should keep it in a room with bright indirect sunlight. A bright window in your home can be a perfect spot. Alternatively, use artificial grow lights.
Although you can keep the Christmas cactus outside under a shade in spring and autumn, it is not wise to keep it outside during hot summer or winter. Extreme temperatures will damage the plant and cause the flowers to wilt or drop.
3. Provide ideal temperature
Christmas cactus requires very cool temperatures to encourage blooming. The temperatures should be kept between 50 – 55 degrees Fahrenheit. The cactus won’t bloom in temperatures below 50 or above 60 degrees Fahrenheit.
When the cactus finally blooms, you must maintain very cool temperatures of between 50 – 60 degrees Fahrenheit to enable the plant to produce flowers. A significant change in this temperature will cause the Christmas cactus to drop its flowers.
That’s why it’s important to keep the flowering plant away from drafts and heat sources like fireplaces. Additionally, keep the plant in one place, movements can disrupt the plant and cause flowers to wilt or fall off.
The flowering period of a Christmas cactus will last for 4 – 6 weeks, and every flower will last for 6 – 9 days. To keep the Christmas cactus blooming, maintain the temperature between 50 – 60 degrees Fahrenheit and keep the flowering Christmas cactus away from direct sunlight.
“Holiday Cactus,” University of Wisconsin-Madison
“Holiday Plants Care and Safety,” The University of Vermont
“Caring for Christmas cacti in the winter,” K-State Research and Extension News
My name is Diane M Lewik, and I am the founder of this website. I am a degree holder in plant biology from the University of California – Berkeley. Over years, I have cultivated a vast collection of succulents and I have learned a great deal about how to grow and care for these unique plants.