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By PlantMom84
Posts:  122
Joined:  Fri Mar 17, 2023 5:43 am
Hello everyone! Hoping you all are having a great day. I have a question. I just got a Thanksgiving cactus as a gift that was bought from a store. Any special needs for it? Any specific instructions for caring for them? TIA

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By optique
Posts:  1853
Joined:  Fri May 24, 2019 11:15 pm
Because it is a rain forest cactus it likes well drained but slightly damp soil. Its ok to let it dry some between watering. It blooms when the days start getting short and can be tricked into blooming in the summer by putting it in a darker area until you see blooms forming. As for light, bright indirect to what ever a window can give it.

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By Intheswamp
Posts:  3133
Joined:  Wed May 04, 2022 2:28 pm
The temperature and light information seems to be really important, and I'm giving a nod to the temperature in being the more important one of the two.

We got a Thanksgiving cactus a few years ago. The first season it bloomed its head off. The next year was mediocre at best and then last year it was rather dismal. Foliage has seemed to grow ok, just wouldn't set many buds. I read about their temperature/light needs a month or so ago so I grabbed the cactus and stuck it in the (very) unheated open-ended garage being as we were getting some cold weather...colder than the 60F recommendation in the article, even.

The only problem is that we do burn the garage light for a while at night so the 12-14 hours of complete darkness wasn't doable for us. I could have set it outside behind the garage for total darkness but I feel that our forensic squirrels would have had to dig it up to discover what treasure lay beneath it. So we made do with "some" hours of total darkness and whatever cold temperatures showed up...a compromise. The plant had zero buds when we put it in the garage.

We gave the plant 3-4 weeks in the garage, temperatures getting down into the 30's to 60's at night during the nights, staying below 60F during the day on several occasions, etc.,. Well, it's not loaded, but it has the most buds now that it's had since we first got it. It's a bit dusty and needs a shower after sitting in the garage, but I'm not messing with it until after it blooms! If I can just get the plant to hang onto the buds we'll have some blooms on our Thanksgiving cactus...sometimes around Christmas, maybe! :lol:
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