How to grow Zygocactus
The only genus of the genus Zygocactus is Zygocactus truncatus. Other species that once belonged to this genus are now included in the genera Schlumbergera or Epiphyllum.
Zygocactus truncatus (Haw.) K. Schum. is a succulent plant that belongs to the Cactaceae family; it is a plant native to Brazil and its name derives from the Greek zygòs, yoke and cactus because of its joint stems.
Zygocactus is an epiphytic plant, which therefore grows on trees in nature; its stems are composed of flat and fleshy branches, with areoles at the margins and at the tip, slightly sticky and from which new branches grow.
The flowers of the Zygocactus are red, tubular and very showy, with winter flowering. For this last reason this plant is commonly called “Christmas cactus”.
In this card we will see how to grow Zygocactus.
For the cultivation of this plant it is necessary to start from the preparation of a suitable substrate that must be very porous and acid; for this reason it must be made with peat, sand and earth of leaves.
If cultivated in pots, a few centimeters of draining substart composed of very large gravel or perlite must be prepared on the bottom. This will prevent excess water from stagnating.
The choice of the area where to grow it is important. Zygocactus needs a very bright location, but never in direct sunlight.
As for the temperatures, remember that in winter it must be exposed to a temperature not less than 10 ° C in a very bright position so that a good flowering can be obtained.
Moreover, since this is a “short day” species, one must have the foresight to let it remain in the dark for at least twelve hours.
Irrigations must then be carried out by letting the superficial part of the substrate dry between one and the other to avoid the occurrence of unfortunately frequent rots in many succulent plants, if not carefully treated.
Finally the technique of multiplication. This operation must be carried out in spring and must be operated by cutting by cutting the joints that must be rooted in pure sand and kept always slightly damp.