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Place your newly planted Christmas cactus where it will receive lots of bright, indirect sunlight. About a month later, you can begin a fertilizing regimen. Use a fertilizer made for blooming plants and feed the plant once a month at full strength or every other week at half strength. Flush the plant with pure water monthly to prevent the build-up of salts.
Unlike many of the other cactus species we keep as houseplants, Christmas cacti are not naturally found in dry desert habitats. They are forest cacti originating from Brazil, where they grow on trees and rocks instead of in the ground.
Christmas cactus prefers warm temperatures, although evening temperatures of 50 to 55F can be used to initiate flower bud formation, which is responsive to day length. From October on, keep the plant where it is cool at night (60 to 65F). Keep away from drafts, heat vents, fireplaces or other sources of hot air.
Shady conditions or filtered light are necessary for Christmas cactus to thrive. You can force bloom by setting the plant in a cooler location (60 to 65F), where the light is low but not absent during the day. Do this soon for Christmas bloom. Do not let the soil dry completely, but water infrequently to keep the soil just moist. Watch for signs of buds at the ends of the leaves; increase humidity and light when they appear. If buds appear too soon, hold them back by reducing the temperature. 59ce067264