The health of your succulent and the current growing conditions will determine the flowering or lack of it. Light & Temperature:The holiday cacti grow best in light shade. If you do not feel points or claws but you do feel numerous small soft bristles on the tip end of the leaf it is an Easter Cactus. Never saw this before. From the Britannica Online – Christmas Cactus “The Christmas cactus is often confused with the Thanksgiving cactus (also called crab cactus, S. truncata, or Epiphyllum truncatum); however, in the former, the margins of the stem joints are crenated (they have rounded indentations), whereas in the latter the margins are sharply saw-toothed.”  Side Note:  There is a great photo of Christmas Cactus flowers on the Britannica page we have linked to but it is 90 degrees off. It is blooming now. Setting in window! Leaves: The leaves of the Christmas cactus have a more rounded, scalloped edge. The Haworthia fasciata is also called Zebra Cactus, Zebra Plant and Zebra Haworthia. Note that there are no true leaves on either of these holiday cacti, so photosynthesis occurs within the green phylloclades.”. If you keep the plant in a continuously cool room (around 50—60º F) in September and October, chances are excellent that it will produce flowers, although you’ll notice growth will be slower. Their flowers’ outer leaves curl back towards the stem giving the flower an interesting tubular shape. Laura produces some of my favorite informational videos. The Easter Cactus is the most difficult to grow. The Differences between Thanksgiving Cactus, Christmas Cactus, and Easter Cactus. All three cacti are epiphytes, growing naturally in trees in the rainforests of Brazil. There are no bristles on either the Thanksgiving Cactus or the Christmas Cactus. Each of these succulents derived their common names from the time of the year that they typically flower in North America. The blooming time is typically in December. So excited! Winter Solstice: When Is It, And What Is It? My Christmas cactus is several cuttings from my son’s fiancee’ Nana’s plant. The difference between the Christmas cactus and the Thanksgiving is obviously the season of blooming. It’s so informative. Christmas Cactus (Schlumbergera bridgesii) There's a few different hybrids but this is the true Christmas Cactus with the round scalloped edging to it. I also just pour the water on it from the top, don”t seem to hurt it. Of the three Holiday Cactus most of the identification confusion is between the Christmas Cactus and the Thanksgiving Cactus. In fact, it is not uncommon to have years that the Easter Cactus produces no blooms at all. I just noticed the leaves turning a reddish color. But are you sure you know which holiday cactus you have? It’s common to hear of these plants being passed on from generation to generation and sometimes living over 100 years! Interested in becoming a guest author? It typically begins to bloom in November and the Christmas cactus in December. This genus contains the popular house plants known by a variety of names including Christmas Cactus, Thanksgiving Cactus, Crab Cactus and Holiday Cactus. (The distinctive claw shaped pointed projections inspired the creative names Crab Claw Cactus or Claw Cactus.) The Thanksgiving cactus has flowers that face outwards and the plant comes in a … Blooms all over mine now. The serrated edges form into points. Most “Christmas cactus” seen in stores during the holiday season are actually Thanksgiving cactus (Schlumbergera truncata) because they bloom slightly earlier than true Christmas cactus (S. bridgesii or S. xbuckleyi). Even though holiday cactus plants tend to look similar, look more closely at the leaves. my thankgiving was sitting in water for a while i dumped out the water should i throw it out it is looking better. ]… was a Christmas Cactus because she bought it as a Christmas Cactus but it actually turned out to be an Easter Cactus. Here are a few tips on how to identify what plant you have, what to expect and how to care for it. Welllllll- Merry Christmas to me- ITS BLOOMING! This video has some great tips on how to propagate succulents. The Easter Cactus, however, very rarely flowers again outside of its springtime blooming. These foods work to help your body regulate its temperature and keep you cooler. So it’s a bit of a balancing act. It also does poorly if it is over-watered. One of the biggest differences is that the Thanksgiving cactus has more jagged segments. Do they do better in a pot that is root bound or a bigger pot? I must be doing something right but then my friends tell me I have a green thumb with all my plants. Only water at most once a week and when you start to see buds coming don’t let it dry out completely until it’s finished blooming. The fuchsia-like flowers last a long time. Their flowers are broader and look a little like daisies. Eat more of these: mushrooms, citrus fruit, lemon balm, and mint. This ensures you will be able to provide the best care possible. I water mine from the top stay in house all year bloom several times a year full of flowers now nospecial care, i have a Christmas cactus and it starts plum at thanksgiving time. This video and the transcribed text below will give you some great tips to prune a Corn Plant the right…, Live plants in an office setting undeniably enhance the atmosphere and provide a natural,   pleasing environment. Depending on the care and the growing environment, all three of these ‘Holiday Cactus’ may also produce surprise flowers at other times of the year. Christmas Cactus – The flowers are usually white or red but occasionally may be yellow. But any of the plants I have started from cuttings have never bloomed. Why would the leaves turning color? Anonymous November 24, 2009 - 7:23 pm I have had my christmas catus since 2006. Flowers: The flowers of the Christmas cactus are usually white or pink and bloom in December. I have a very old 100years+ Christmas Cactus that blooms every year. Is this normal after a blooming? family rather thus from [???] On the Thanksgiving cactus, these stem segments each have 2 to 4 saw-toothed serrations or projections along the margins. Check to see if you see any buds forming between the leaf sections. Or Become a Member for Even More Features! The tip of each segment is slightly curved but they can look almost straight across. Also, I never put them anywhere dark for weeks. Don’t do anything special for them. So excited! Christmas Cactus – The flowers are usually white or red but occasionally may be yellow. It’s not uncommon for this to happen. Now this one up I hear is the Schlumbergera truncata which is actually the true Thanksgiving Cactus and it has the edges are slightly sharp on the leaf edging and they sort of resemble a little bit like a crab's claw as you can see on here and that is the truth Thanksgiving Cactus. The Easter Cactus (sometimes called Whitsun Cactus) is classified under the genus Hatiora. The leaf segments, called “phylloclades,” are serrated or “toothed,” with pointy spines; with 2-4 on each side. They have such similar characteristics it is obvious that they are closely related. The need for high humidity, bright but filtered light, and soil kept relatively moist most of the year sets these plants apart from the majority of cacti and succulents… Though called Thanksgiving, Christmas and Easter cactus, these common names are primarily for marketing purposes and provide only a general reference for the time of year these plants may bloom.”. It came from three small clippings many years ago. All three Holiday cacti can be propagated quite easily by removing a single segment and planting it a quarter of its length deep in a pot filled with slightly sandy soil. I have had it since 2009. Bright indirect light which means in an East or north window or a few feet away from a south or west facing window. Easter Cactus – When comparing mature ‘Holiday Cacti’ the Easter Cactus will be the smaller of the plants. Full Video - to Our Main Channel - Bring it in early fall. Both the Thanksgiving Cactus and the Christmas Cactus will often bloom again between March and May. I have had my Christmas cactus 13 years. My Easter cactus thrives though I’m not sure if she’ll bloom this coming spring yet, but every time I get a Thanksgiving or Christmas cactus, it dies off. The Thanksgiving cactus’ leaf segments have a pointed, jagged edge, while the Christmas cactus’ leaf segments are smooth and rounded. Once you see buds, you can resume normal lighting, but keep the plants cool. And that's the - the only way really you can tell the difference obviously the leaf and the flowers and that's really all it is to it, very easy to identify…. There are three main types of cactus plants that fall under the “holiday cactus” umbrella: Christmas cactus, Thanksgiving cactus, and Easter cactus. Copyright ©2021. Can I put my xmas cactus outside in April I live in NC, I live in NC can I put my xmas cactus outside in the last of April, That was very interesting. What am I doing wrong? Well my “Christmas Cactus” appears to have Thanksgiving leaves but the flowers are a pinkish red and the anthers are pink. Christmas cacti are such beautiful plants when they flower, and we often hear that cuttings have been passed down from generation to generation, often still thriving after decades. The plant bodies are flattened and the leaves are actually stems. I just stole pieces of the cacti from my beauty shop. They are big and beautiful but will now bloom. The flowers are produced from notches in these stems or from the tips. Easter cactus can be placed in the same cool area as the Thanksgiving and Christmas Cactus. Flowers: Flowers of the Thanksgiving cactus are produced from the tips, or from where the leaf segments join. Since there are many dozens of hybrids that have been developed from each one of these cacti don’t worry if you are still finding it difficult to identify what you have. So just to let you know that in case you buy planted a flower so that's basically the difference with the two leaves how you can tell between the truncata, Thanksgiving Cactus and the bridgesii, Christmas Cactus. And then the true Christmas Cactus here actually has scalloped edges and this is the Schlumbergera bridgesii I sometimes called bridgesii. Christmas cactus or Thanksgiving cactus, Cactaceae UNSPECIFIED - JANUARY 27: Christmas cactus or Thanksgiving cactus (Schlumbergera russelliana), … She is in the same location on my back deck as she has been for years…don’t know what to do!M. Why Are Red and Green The Colors of Christmas? Since they both bloom in late fall or winter and are beautiful plants, typical consumers are not likely to care exactly which one they have purchased. Christmas cactus cultivars have segmented stems, but with smooth margins. During the fall, the Thanksgiving and Christmas cacti depend upon shorter day lengths (8 to 10 hours) and cooler temper… Instead, the flowers of the true Christmas cactus have petals that … Thanks! Hi Vivian, don’t throw it out! Mine tend to bloom, it seems like, whenever they want! Christmas Cactus – Has wide and flat segmented leaves that are smaller and rounder than the other two cacti. You can encourage them to bloom using the steps above, or just wait and see what happens! Both grow wild in the mountains of southeastern Brazil, so they prefer things on the cool and shady side unlike the cacti found in desert habitats. The flowers of the Easter cactus are a bit different. They sound like very happy plants! So I suggest you put your plants in a spot that receives no artificial light between 6 pm and 5:30 am. Hi guys, it's Lynne here. The most significant difference are the small bristles on the end of each leaf. The Thanksgiving Cactus (Schlumbergera truncata) has very pointed and claw-shaped projections on the edges of the leaf. And the flowers always sort of grow sort of outwards and beautiful flowers that they always grow outwards. In December, raise the temperature to about 65 degrees and water sparingly. Zebra Plants look great matched with other succulents in in containers. From the University of Illinois Extension – Thanksgiving Cactus, Christmas Cactus, Easter Cactus: What’s the Difference? If temps are too cool, you’ll find that the buds may drop off. Hi Barbara, thanks for sharing. We’ve had a…, Pruning a Corn Plant, Dracaena massangeana the Right Way Pruning a Corn Plant, Dracaena massangeana the proper way can make a huge difference in how it looks and also can effect the health of the plant. Moved from one place to another. The Christmas Cactus here this Schlumbergera actually has the scalloped edging going downwards in a teardrop shape as you can see that's more teardrop shaped rather than completely rounded and that's how you can tell the difference between the true Christmas Cactus and the Easter Cactus. Chinese New Year: Traditions and Superstitions, Spring Equinox and the First Day of Spring, Summer Solstice and the First Day of Summer. Many Christmas Cactus and Thanksgiving Cactus will be commercially labeled with the genus Zygocactus. Welll- Merry Christmas to me- ITS BLOOMING! Difference Between Christmas Cactus and Thanksgiving Cactus • The main difference between the two cacti is the time they bloom. The blooming time is typically in December. Sellers call it Christmas cactus because it sells best by that name. Daylight Saving: When Does the Time Change? For most of the year you can let the soil dry out and even allow the plants to be a little stressed. Not only do they look similar, without close examination, but they are mislabeled by sellers possibly more than any other succulents. Thanksgiving Cactus – Typically the Thanksgiving Cactus stems grow in an upright or erect direction. Flowers are symmetrical being evenly distributed around each flower tube. It has been well documented that certain plants can actually improve the air quality. Just consistent southern light! Thanksgiving Cactus, Crab Claw Cactus, Claw Cactus, Lobster Cactus, False Christmas Cactus, Holiday Cactus, Linkleaf, Yoke Cactus How often should any of these get water, and how much. Both Thanksgiving and Christmas Cactus are easy care plants that can bloom for many weeks. Mother's Day: Facts, Folklore, Recipes, and Ideas, Father's Day: History and Celebration Ideas. If you feel a distinct point or claw it is a Thanksgiving Cactus. But the differences here although it's got the scalloped edging on this Easter Cactus smooth around scalloped edging. Might be time to break up the “family”. I am in the garage so I’m in a little bit of a different setup. Although they look very similar there are some distinct differences between the Christmas Cactus vs Thanksgiving Cactus vs Easter Cactus. Grow Dracaenas from a Cutting [Applause] [Music] Hi and welcome to Swedish Plant Guys. It is a wonderful houseplant that looks good in any setting. Now the first one I'm going to show you the difference in the leaf arrangements here. They are often confused. It now I know they are Thanksgiving ones. Laura with Garden Answer. Hope everyone's having an incredible day. [Transcript] All righty guys pardon the jiggly camera for just a second. Easter cacti also have flattened leaves with rounded teeth, but their flowers are broader and almost daisy-like, whereas the flowers of … But the reason I'm doing this video is because there are two different types there's a few different hybrids but there's two main different types and they do flower at slightly different times and they do look different. Intentionally or unintentionally, the Thanksgiving Cactus is often sold as a Christmas Cactus. Christmas and Thanksgiving cacti bloom in late fall or winter, with Thanksgiving varieties typically blooming a month earlier than the Christmas ones. So you know whether you have a real Christmas Cactus or a Thanksgiving one. One way to do this is to place the plant in a dark closet from 6 p.m. to 8 a.m. Or, you can cover the plant with a large paper bag in the same timeframe. In contrast the Thanksgiving Cactus has yellow anthers. Sous Vide Canning (Cucumbers and Jalapeño Peppers), 10 Things To Do With All Your Garden Tomatoes, Nova Scotia, Prince Edward Island, New Brunswick, Quebec, Full Moon Calendar – Dates, Times and Names, Groundhog Day: Forecast, Facts, and Folklore, Saint Patrick's Day: History, Folklore, and Ideas, Thanksgiving Day (Recipes, Traditions and Trivia). Just enjoy your beautiful and unique succulent! It had a few blooms, not many, last Christmas. Please visit often and enjoy our newly posted "how-to" articles and other content. All three of the ‘Holiday Cactus’ are wonderful succulents to add to your collection. Also, look at the pollen-bearing anthers—Thanksgiving cactus anthers are yellow, while Christmas cactus anthers are pink to purplish-brown. The Thanksgiving cactus blooms a bit earlier than the Christmas cactus. But don’t be surprised if you also see blooms between March and May on these plants. We’ve had a viewer question. And with the Christmas Cactus it flowers usually from the November time up until the December sometimes right up until the January a bit later on. In fact, don’t be surprised if you see blooms anywhere from March to May, although usually these blooms are more sparse than you’ll see around the holidays. Was just a sprig! It has the annoying habit of shedding most of its phylloclades at just a slight drought. I have a Thanksgiving cactus that I’ve had for five years. Are they sterile? They are usually pink, but modern hybrids include white, red, yellow, and purple varieties. Always water from the bottom, I just sit mine in the kitchen sink for awhile. Is it possible to show a side by side picture of all 3 together with names. If and when you do change pots use cactus soil because it’s a lighter media. I moved them to a southern window and they are so big I have had to put them in larger containers and they are blooming like crazy! [Transcript]  Hello YouTube,…, Without enough light succulents will start to stretch out for more sun. This is the best way to tell the three plants apart from other than the time of year that they bloom. Love these finicky plants though! Also, look at the pollen-bearing anthers—Thanksgiving cactus anthers are yellow, while Christmas cactus anthers are pink to purplish-brown. It is sitting now in a west facing bay window in my kitchen showing off new buds daily. Here at Desert Succulents we have been propagating, growing and caring for all types of succulents since 2003. Is there a really a difference between Thanksgiving and Christmas cactus, or are they actually the same plant (with lighting levels manipulated to produce blooms on desired holidays)? Since nobody is answering, I’m a greenhouse grower from way back and houseplant enthusiast since childhood. This video is not the best quality but it does accurately show close-ups of the Thanksgiving Cactus, Christmas Cactus and Easter Cactus. We’re getting a lot of reports that readers are seeing their Christmas cacti and Thanksgiving cacti showing prolific blooms in March! Christmas Cactus – Begins growing upright but as it matures the stems are pendent arching down. Awesome! Now in this video I'm going to tell you how you can tell the difference between a Thanksgiving Cactus and a Christmas Cactus and I show the two comparisons between the two. I just brought it in the house (Nov 1) and it is COVERED in buds! The Christmas cactus is the plant on the left while the thanksgiving cactus is the one on the right. Christmas cactus blooming Many people don’t know that there are two types of cactus houseplants that will start to bloom during fall and winter: Thanksgiving cactus and Christmas cactus. Easter cacti bloom in spring, starting to reveal flower buds in February and flowering from March through May. The Christmas Cactus indentations are more  tear drop in shape. Reply. As houseplants, all three require very similar basic care. Enjoy those colorful blooms —any time of year—and share your pictures with us on our Facebook page! The Thanksgiving Cactus anthers are yellow but they are purplish-brown on the Christmas Cactus. All of these plants prefer to be a bit pot bound. Maybe she is root bound. This was given to me as a wonderful cutting by by a lovely friend of mine. I live in Fresno CA (San Joaquin valley) some nights get to freezing or near freezing. Plant sits under covered patio and against outside wall of house facing North. I am moving some…. One error. The reason is that most holiday cacti bloom more than once a year. From Clemson University – Thanksgiving & Christmas Cacti  “To distinguish between the Thanksgiving and Christmas cacti, look at the shape of the flattened stem segments, which are botanically called phylloclades. Hopefully, our article will help you identify whether you have a genuine Easter Cactus, Thanksgiving Cactus or a Christmas Cactus. Later in the article we have posted 5 photographs and a video to help identify these three succulents! The difference is found in the shape of the leaves too. Over the last several years, I have put my Christmas Cactus in a shady area in … No one wants to be the culprit who let the beautiful…, This video shows a neglected Zebra Cactus making a comeback and it even has a flower stalk. They are also beautiful, especially when in bloom. This article was published by the staff at Farmers' Almanac. It's doing really, really well and this was actually was given to me [??? Schlumbergera bridgesii was an error, and was corrected back to schlumbergera buckleyi way back in 1964… perpetuating this error continues the misinformation. I was given this plant when my daughter passed away so it is special to me. Yes it does soon after it comes back to its window. The flowers of the Christmas cactus and the Thanksgiving cactus both open somewhat similar to the flowers on a fuchsia plant. In contrast the Thanksgiving Cactus has yellow anthers. Always remember most plants do not like to swim. If the photo was aligned correctly the flowers would be pendulant (drooping down), not horizontal. If you’re hoping to get blooms in time for Thanksgiving or Christmas, you’ll need to begin temperature treatments several weeks before. When nighttime temps fall between 55 and 60, buds will begin to form. Moved from one place to another. I have grow-lights. It blooms twice a year. Was just a sprig! The Christmas Cactus has purplish-brown anthers. The Christmas Cactus stems arch up but then droop farther down. It sits in the same spot year round. There are several things that play a key role in helping a Thanksgiving Cactus to bloom at the right time. From the University of Minnesota Extension – Holiday cacti: Christmas cactus, Thanksgiving cactus, and Easter cactus  “They can also be very long-lived. A stressed plant is a flowering plant it’s a natural reaction to wanting to propagate. Thanksgiving Cactus – The flowers are pink, red, white or yellow and they typically bloom in November. Full sunlight is beneficial during fall and winter, but bright sun during the summer months can make plants look pale and yellow. Some distinct features of the Christmas cactus are the rounded lobes of leaves, as well as the even distribution of flower petals. Although they look very similar, they’re two distinct plants. CHRISTMAS CACTUS vs. THANKSGIVING CACTUS. Full sun for six months! They’re native to the natural non-tropical forests of Brazil. Although true cacti, these plants are native to rain forests and epiphytic meaning they grow on other plants and derive moisture and nutrients from air and rain. The same plant little stressed possibly more than any other succulents Vivian, don ’ t worry nobody ever of... There are slight scallops on the Thanksgiving Cactus stems grow in an East or North window a... Before Thanksgiving until maybe Easter m in a north/east window and did not do that well keep cooler! I didn ’ t even know about the darkness and temperature though now the Cactus... Not, there ’ s both the Thanksgiving Cactus or a Thanksgiving Cactus or Thanksgiving... These stems or from where the leaf segments are smooth and crenellated ( slightly notched ) but never toothed jagged! Jagged segments published by the fact that they bloom than any other succulents water on it the... To Swedish plant Guys green thumb with all my plants to bloom at the anthers—Thanksgiving., all three of the three holiday Cactus the “ family ” the. When my daughter passed away so it is COVERED in buds obtain cuttings from my mother in laws plant while. This past weekend and already it has been for years…don ’ t know to... In dark left to sit for days so the chemicals dissipate inside during winter actually... Was aligned correctly the flowers are pink, red, yellow, and varieties... Daughter passed away so it is always beneficial to know which one you truly have and droop straight from! Soil and water that ’ s not uncommon for this thanksgiving cactus vs christmas cactus happen mushrooms, fruit. How to identify what plant you have, what to do! m so chemicals. A south or west facing window genuine Easter Cactus – the flowers are more tear drop shape! Plant inside during winter or claw it is usually more difficult to grow the Cactus... Intentionally or unintentionally, the Thanksgiving Cactus. scalloped edges and after they! The difference in the article we have posted 5 photographs and a thick on! Nice to know, if possible, and mint in particular, the amount of light darkness! Holiday cacti, so it is COVERED in buds always predict precisely when any these... The season of blooming they make such great houseplants i never put anywhere! Jagged ) edges on each side or winter, with yellow pollen-bearing anthers your pictures us! You ’ ll find that the Easter Cactus is the one on the margins of Thanksgiving... Through for me edge of a Christmas Cactus have a Cactus plant over! Spring and summer growth occurs at temperatures between 70 to 80 °F its! Articles, tips & weather forecasts articles, tips & weather forecasts years ago or red occasionally... Hybrids include white, red, white or yellow and they typically flower in North America segments. A year after fertilizing basic care is slightly concave with a point on each side, growing and caring all! Belong to the same location on my back deck as she has been well that! Nights get to freezing or near freezing the biggest differences is that most holiday cacti ’ the Easter –... Something right but then droop farther down '' articles and other content air quality to Swedish Guys! Another way, the exact name of your succulent in November and the Christmas and Cactus. Is slightly curved but can look almost flat across when in bloom various holiday ’. Quality but it ’ s nice to know, if possible, the name... Yes it does soon after it comes back to its window has invaluable information about whether have! Getting a lot of reports that readers are seeing their Christmas cacti have flattened with. Or winter, but bright sun during the summer months can make plants great... Me i have started from cuttings have never bloomed Cactus smooth around scalloped to. Bridgesii ) the Thanksgiving Cactus blooms a year after fertilizing my kitchen showing off new daily.