Does a Christmas cactus need cactus soil?

Asked By: Muriel | Last Updated: 17th April, 2020
Category: home and garden landscaping
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When grown in a pot, the plant needs a well-drained and well-aerated soil that allows its roots to breathe. Heavy garden soil or potting soil designed to retain a lot of moisture will suffocate the roots, making the Christmas cactus grow and flower poorly. It also may result in root rot and the Christmas cactus' death.

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In this regard, can I use cactus soil for Christmas cactus?

Take your time, because repotting a Christmas cactus can be tricky. A lightweight, well-drained potting mixture is critical, so look for a commercial mix for bromeliads or succulents. You can also use a mixture of two-thirds regular potting soil and one-third sand.

Subsequently, question is, do Christmas cactus like coffee grounds? It is fine that you add some coffee to your Christmas cactus but you should make sure the soil is the right type of soil to do this one with. The coffee can't be hot and you can't have any type of sweeteners or cream in the coffee.

In this manner, does cactus need special soil?

Cacti require a porous, sandy or pebbly potting soil that provides plenty of aeration and excellent drainage. A good cactus potting mixture will also consist of some organic material that makes moisture available to the plant roots when watered but then dries out quickly.

Can I use African violet soil for Christmas cactus?

The exceptions to this rule are few, including cacti and sedums. Seeds and transplants do very well in a light soil mixture, and African violet potting soil may be perfect for them.

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Do you water a Christmas cactus from the top or bottom?

A good method is to water a cactus as follows: Dry climate, outdoors: Water every two to three days when warm and sunny. Humid, cool or indoors: Water every week. During the fall and winter months, the plants should be watered less frequently in order to promote blooming.

Does Christmas cactus like to be root bound?

In other cases, like with the peace lily or Christmas cactus, the root bound houseplants will not produce blooms unless they are under some kind of stress. So, repotting a root bound plant like this means that although the plant will grow plenty of leaves, it will never produce the flowers that the plant is valued for.

What type of soil is best for growing Christmas cactus?

The ideal potting soil will contain a high proportion of organic matter such as peat or well-decomposed compost. Addition of coarse sand, or even aquarium gravel, will provide the necessary drainage and aeration. There are commercially available cactus potting soils that are designed to be well-drained soils.

Can you use Miracle Grow on Christmas cactus?

Plant your Christmas cactus in Miracle-Gro® Cactus, Palm & Citrus Potting Mix. Water when the top 1 to 2 inches of soil are dry. Feed from after blooming until fall with Miracle-Gro® Succulent Plant Food. Give your Christmas cactus 6 weeks of extra darkness and lower temps to encourage blooming.

Why are the leaves on my Christmas cactus limp?


Wilted or limp Christmas cactus is sometimes caused by a lack of water or too much direct sunlight. If you've neglected to water the limp Christmas cactus, begin by giving the plant a limited drink. Continue to water sparingly every few days until the soil is lightly moist.

Can you root Christmas cactus in water?

How to root the Christmas cactus cutting in water. Use a sharp scalpel (we like these sterile, disposable cutting scalpels) or small knife to remove a length of Christmas cactus. As long as it has at least two sections, it will root.

Why my Christmas cactus is not blooming?

If the plant sets flower buds and then they fall off, it usually has to do with either receiving too much or not enough water or lack of air humidity. The good news is that Christmas cacti are considered relatively easy to get to bloom again if their temperature and light requirements are met.

Is Christmas cactus a succulent?

Unlike actual cactus, the Christmas cactus isn't completely drought tolerant. It needs watering but, like a succulent, it can store water in its leaves. So allow the soil in the plant's container to dry at least half-way down into the soil before watering again.

How do you prepare soil for cactus?

  1. Combine equal parts peat moss and ground fir bark in a bucket to create a base potting mixture for tropical or desert cacti.
  2. Mix two parts of the potting base mix with one part coarse builder's sand for a tropical or holiday cactus, which requires more moisture and tolerates less drainage than desert cacti.

How often should you change succulent soil?


Repotting summer-dormant succulents in the fall and winter-dormant ones in the spring with give them time to get used to the new pot and soil before growth season. On average, you should repot your succulents every two years to make sure the soil is fresh and fertile and there is enough space for the plant to grow.

Can I plant succulents in regular potting soil?

When succulents are small, they need more water, so a dense soil (like regular potting soil) works at that stage. But leaving succulents in this soil for too long can quickly cause a succulent to rot–or in some cases, prevent it from getting the water it needs. Peat moss is the primary ingredient in most potting soils.

Do succulents need special soil?

You can use a special soil mix for succulents or create your own by mixing potting soil with sand to make it more porous (remember, succulents don't like wet roots).

How can I make my cactus grow faster?

Place your cactus on a bright, south-facing window sill or the sunniest spot in your home. Rotate the pot once a week to make sure growth is even. Aim to keep your cactus in an environment with temperatures ranging from 65 to 85 degrees Fahrenheit during the summer and 45 to 55 degrees during the winter.

How often should I water my cactus?

How often to water and fertilize: While growing, cacti and succulents should be watered at least once a week. Some people water more often than this. During each watering, give the soil a good soaking, so that water runs out of the 'drainage holes' of the pots.

Can you use normal compost for cactus?


Compost. The compost must be open and free draining, to help prevent waterlogging and recreate natural habitat. Cacti compost is readily available from garden centres. Alternatively, use John Innes No 2 with up to 30 percent extra grit or fine gravel by volume, to help with drainage.

How do you fertilize cactus?

Apply a low-nitrogen, fertilizer, such as a 5-10-10 blend. Dissolve 1 tbsp. of the fertilizer in 1 gallon of water. Water the cactus until its soil is moist.

When should you put a Christmas cactus in the dark?

The Bloom Cycle of a Christmas Cactus
  1. In late September or early October, place the plant in a dark room or keep covered (under a box or bag works fine) for at least 12 hours a day.
  2. When the tiny buds appear (after three to four weeks), the light/dark schedule can cease.