THE MISTLETOE CACTUS

We love this dude. He has stolen our hearts with his good-looking charm, scraggly hair and tough nature. Perfect for hanging planters or planters with quirky faces, this fellow here gives that extra oomph, wherever he is placed.

All plants are stunning in their own right but the Mistletoe Cactus is definitely one of those that everyone finds beautiful. This fellow grows out somewhat like hair—making him the perfect candidate for hanging planters or quirky planters with faces. He is also a fairly hardy plant, so definitely a great choice for new plarents too.


LIGHT


Keep this hairy little man happy by giving him bright, indirect light or morning sun. He is after all still part of the cactus family, so we recommend that he gets a good amount of light or his tendrils will start dropping off (you do not want that!). Remember to rotate him regularly for even growth and to avoid a lopsided plant.


WATER


This fellow prefers lightly moist soil but be very careful not to overwater. He will throw a fit (i.e. die) if you leave him standing in water. Water thoroughly when the top one-quarter of the soil is dry. Do not let him dry out completely.


SOIL


Well-draining, gritty soil is key—use regular potting mix with some additional sphagnum peat moss to retain moisture and sand to promote drainage.


TEMPERATURE AND HUMIDITY


He is not a fan of cold temperatures. Keep him in places warmer than five degrees celsius. They will also thank you with new growth when you keep his environment humid and mist him from to time.


PESTS AND DISEASES


The Mistletoe Cactus is not commonly associated with pests or diseases but it can be infested with mealy bugs, scale, aphids, and spider mites if not careful. To prevent any infestation, spray him down with a tad of neem oil or mildly soapy water every 3-4 weeks.


GROWTH


People say that he is a slow-growing plant but personally, we've found that he grows at a moderate pace. We noticed a good amount of new growth at the end of the tendrils after 2-3 weeks. There's no need to give him a haircut unless you find him excessively long.


FERTILISATION


This guy is not fussed about fertilisers, though he doesn't mind them. Feed him during growing season (warmer temperatures). Simply refer to the instructions on your fertiliser product and halve the amount of fertiliser required to reduce the risk of fertilizer burn.


PROPAGATION


Take a good amount of cuttings of about 2-3 inches from the parent plant (the more cuttings you have, the denser the baby plant will be) and leave them out to dry for 2-3 days. This allows the clipped ends to heal and scab over, which helps to prevent pests and rot. Next, dip them in rooting hormone (optional), insert about half of each cutting into the well-draining potting soil and add a little more soil to help secure the cuttings in their spot. Water the pot deeply and gently, and place it somewhere with bright, indirect light. Keep the soil moist at all times and roots should form in about 3-5 weeks. Very soon after, you'll see new growth—yay!


REPOTTING


There's no need to repot too frequently as he does not have a massive root system. Repotting every 2-3 years will work just fine. Check the drainage hole(s) to see if roots are starting to outgrow its container. If you see roots, simply loosen the soil around the plant, pull it out, gently remove excess soil from its roots, place it in a slightly larger container and top it up with soil. If you don’t see roots but get a sense that the soil is tired or worn out, go ahead and repot it with fresh soil in its current pot.


TOXICITY


This cutie is not known to be toxic.


What was your experience with the Mistletoe Cactus? Share your story with us. If there are any plants that you’d like to learn more about, let us know. Till next time, happy planting!

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