Have you ever tried growing and sharing Christmas Cactus? It’s an incredibly rewarding experience, especially when you give them as gifts during the holiday season. Now, when it comes to propagating these wonderful plants, there are two main methods: using soil or water. Personally, I’m a big fan of water propagation because there’s something magical about watching the roots grow through the clear sides of the containers. Plus, it’s an awesome way to share the beauty of this plant with others. So, if you’re ready to learn more about propagating Christmas Cactus in water, join me on this exciting journey!
- 1 Tools You Need for Propagating Christmas Cactus in Water
- 2 Propagating Christmas Cactus
- 3 Rooting Christmas Cactus in Water
- 4 Planting the Christmas Cactus
- 5 Propagating Christmas Cactus in Water: Step-by-Step Guide
- 6 How Long Does It Take for Christmas Cactus to Root in Water?
- 7 Is It Better to Propagate Christmas Cactus in Soil or Water?
Tools You Need for Propagating Christmas Cactus in Water
To successfully propagate your Christmas Cactus in water, you’ll need a few tools:
- Sharp scalpel (you can also use a small knife if you don’t have a scalpel)
- Small jar, vase, or any container that can hold water
Once your Christmas Cactus cuttings have rooted, you’ll need the following items to provide them with proper care:
- Planting pot
- Potting mix
- Sand or compost
Propagating Christmas Cactus
Before you start propagating, make sure you choose a healthy Christmas Cactus with strong, vibrant stems. Use a sharp scalpel or small knife to take a short cutting that looks like a Y-shape, with at least 2 or 3 segments. This Y-shaped cutting is ideal, but as long as you have a cutting with at least 2 segments, it will root successfully. You don’t need to let the cutting dry before rooting it in water.
Rooting Christmas Cactus in Water
- Fill your chosen jar, vase, or container with water.
- Place the Christmas Cactus cutting into the water, making sure the cut end is facing downwards and at least two nodes (where the segments join) are submerged.
- Put the jar in a spot with bright, indirect sunlight, either indoors or outdoors.
- Allow the cutting to develop roots for a few days.
- Keep an eye on the water level and make sure the two nodes remain submerged at all times. If needed, add more water.
- Wait patiently for 6 to 8 weeks until the roots grow as long as the cutting.
Planting the Christmas Cactus
Once your cuttings have fully rooted, it’s time to plant them in a pot filled with potting mix. We recommend using Miracle-Gro Cactus, Palm & Citrus Potting Mix*, mixed with a bit of sand or compost. Water the plant when the top 1 to 2 inches of soil become dry, and increase humidity around the plant. Keep the air temperature between 70 and 65 degrees Fahrenheit during the day and 60 to 65 degrees Fahrenheit overnight. Fertilize the plant regularly, especially after blooming until fall, using Miracle-Gro Succulent Plant Food*.
*As an Amazon Associate, we earn from qualifying purchases which means we receive a small commission when you make a purchase, at zero cost to you.
Propagating Christmas Cactus in Water: Step-by-Step Guide
In summary, here are the steps to propagate your Christmas Cactus in water:
- Choose a healthy Christmas Cactus with vibrant stems.
- Use a sharp scalpel or small knife to take a short cutting in a Y-shape, with at least 2 or 3 joined segments.
- Fill a jar, vase, or container with water.
- Place the cutting in the water, ensuring two nodes are submerged.
- Put the container in a spot with bright, indirect sunlight.
- Wait for 6 to 8 weeks for the roots to grow as long as the cutting, keeping the nodes submerged.
- Once fully rooted, plant the cuttings in a pot filled with potting mix.
- Water the plant when the top 1 to 2 inches of soil are dry.
- Increase humidity around the plant.
- Maintain an air temperature between 70 and 65 degrees Fahrenheit during the day and 60 to 65 degrees Fahrenheit overnight.
- Fertilize the plant regularly.
That’s it! Propagating Christmas Cactus in water is pretty easy and can be done throughout the year, although it may be faster during the active growing phase.
How Long Does It Take for Christmas Cactus to Root in Water?
Rooting Christmas cactus cuttings in water takes patience. It usually takes around two to three weeks for the cuttings to root. If you want to speed up the process, place the cuttings in a sunny window, preferably facing south. The extra sunlight helps the roots grow quicker.
Is It Better to Propagate Christmas Cactus in Soil or Water?
When it comes to propagating Christmas Cactus, you have two main options: soil or water propagation. Both methods can be successful, but there are a few factors to consider when deciding which one is better for you.
- Success Rate: Generally, water propagation tends to have a higher success rate compared to soil propagation. This is because it provides an optimal environment for the development of roots.
- Convenience: Propagating Christmas Cactus in water requires minimal effort and monitoring. You don’t need to worry about watering the cuttings regularly or providing additional nutrients. Simply place the cuttings in water and wait for them to develop roots. Soil propagation, on the other hand, requires more attention to watering, soil moisture levels, and providing the right nutrients.
- Visual Appeal: If you enjoy observing the rooting process and watching the roots grow, water propagation might be the better choice for you. The transparent container allows you to witness the development of roots, which can be an exciting and educational experience.
- Flexibility: While water propagation is convenient, soil propagation offers more flexibility in terms of transitioning the cuttings into adulthood. When you propagate in soil, the cuttings develop roots in a medium similar to their future growing conditions. This makes it easier to acclimate them to their new pot or garden environment once they are fully rooted.
Ultimately, the decision of whether to propagate your Christmas Cactus in soil or water depends on your preferences and the resources available. Both methods can be successful, so choose the one that aligns with your gardening style and provides the best outcome for your plants.