It`s one of those great words that you have to say over and over, just to hear it roll off the tongue. Go on, give it a go - you know you want to ... SCHLUMBERGIA. Zygo Cactus is its common name, bit easier to get your tongue around, and like many cactus - it`s all about the flower.
Most of the year these plants can be a bit bland - just lots of segmented, tender cactus foliage. Most hang in a pendulous manner and make great hanging baskets although there are a few with a more upright habit. I tend to move them back into the greenhouse or tuck em away when not in flower and bring them all out at flowering time.
And because they are in the succulent family, they need little care and certainly little water. I just use a cactus/succulent potting mix for good drainage and throw on some slow release fertilizer. I gave my daughter her first hanging basket full of apricot and cream flowers. I`m sure this will make a long lived and hardy hanging plant for her patio.
How about this fabulous orange one!
They make easy cuttings to produce more plants - just break off the ends and plant a few in another pot. They are slow to get going but you rarely lose any. I collected lots of the broken bits when I worked in a retail nursery - what a great way to increase my collection with new colours.
The pot of cuttings at the front are one year old - they will take off in spring. The rest are two years old and flowering for the first time. If you want a big bushy pot full, just plant lots in the pot!
When you are a gardener with plenty of space, you can see how easy it is to start collections of plants. A cutting here and there over the years and voila - you`ve got a collection.
Thanks for visiting Bloomfield`s Blog - leave a comment about your favorite collection.....