8 Fascinating Facts About Christmas Cactus

Updated: Dec. 14, 2023

What do you know about this flowering drought-tolerant houseplant? Boost your holiday plant knowledge with these Christmas cactus facts.

christmas cactus factsCourtesy Sue Gronholz
North- and east-facing windows provide ideal light.

Don’t Worry About Repotting

Christmas cactus flowers best when slightly potbound and doesn’t often need repotting. (Once every three years at the very most.) If you do repot your cactus, do so when it’s no longer blooming.

After you’re done reading these Christmas cactus facts, check out our complete guide on how to care for a Christmas cactus and help it bloom.

Christmas Cactus History

Allan Cunningham was the first botanist to collect and document Christmas cactus during an expedition to Brazil in the early 1800s.

Flowering Holiday Centerpiece

Two great spots to enjoy the cascading stems of a blooming Christmas cactus during the holidays are right on the table or hanging from above.

Psst—this Thanksgiving cactus is the perfect Turkey Day centerpiece.

These Plants Need Darkness to Bloom

Get your cactus blooming by keeping it in uninterrupted darkness for 14 hours.

Learn how to grow and care for amaryllis.

Protect Your Plant from Cold

Christmas cacti tolerate cool indoor temperatures, but require at least 50 degree Fahrenheit.

Grow an Easter cactus for festive springtime flowers.

Root Cuttings of a Christmas Cactus

Share your Christmas cactus with friends and family by burying a three-segment-long stem in well-drained potting mix. Water sparingly and it should take root in about four weeks.

Discover fascinating facts about poinsettias.

Plant Outdoors in Southern Zones

Christmas cacti are popular indoor plants but they can be grown outdoors in zones 9 to 11 if they are protected from hard freezes.

See more of the best Christmas plants and flowers for the holiday season.

Connect Generations of Gardeners

Here’s one of the most amazing Christmas cactus facts. With proper care, these plants can live for decades. One Montana family has passed down the same Christmas cactus for over 145 years!

Next, check out the top 10 seriously cool succulents that make great houseplants.