How to Propagate Easter Cactus

Overview

The Easter cactus blooms from spring to early summer, providing pink or red blooms near the Easter holiday season. These cacti may also bloom a second time in fall if provided with the proper care. Easter cactus has flat, green, fleshy leaves with small spines at the tips. Usually grown as a flowering houseplant, this cactus is usually propagated from stem cuttings. Take cuttings in late spring and early summer, after the Easter cactus has finished flowering for the season. The cuttings quickly root, allowing you to propagate more plants that are ready to bloom in time for the following spring's holiday season.

Step 1

Cut off a healthy stem from the outside of the Easter cactus with shears. Choose a stem that consists of two to five segments, or leaves.

Step 2

Lay the stem cuttings out on a paper plate in a warm, well-ventilated room for 12 hours or overnight. The cut end will dry and seal over during this time, which prevents rot once the cutting is planted.

Step 3

Fill a 5-inch-diameter pot with moistened perlite or other well-draining potting mix formulated for cuttings. Use a pot that has at least one drainage hole in the bottom so the mix doesn't become soggy.

Step 4

Push the cut side of the cutting into the potting mix to a 1-inch depth. Space multiple cuttings 2 inches apart in the pot. Water the potting mix until the excess moisture begins to drain from the bottom of the pot.

Step 5

Insert two wood skewers into the potting mix on either side of the cuttings. Place the pot into a plastic bag and seal it. The skewers prevent the plastic from touching the cuttings.

Step 6

Set the pot in an area that receives bright, indirect light throughout the day. Open the bag to vent if excessive condensation builds up on the inside of the bag. Close the bag again once the condensation dries. Water the mix if the surface begins to dry.

Step 7

Transplant the cuttings to individual pots filled with a potting soil formulated for cacti once the cuttings are fully rooted, usually within six to eight weeks of planting. Water the new Easter cacti when the soil surface begins to dry.

Things You'll Need

  • Shears
  • Paper plate
  • Pot
  • Potting mix
  • Skewers
  • Plastic bag

References

  • University of California Extension: Holiday Cacti
  • Iowa State University: Growing Holiday Cacti
Keywords: propagating Easter cactus, Easter cactus cuttings, rooting cacti cuttings

About this Author

Jenny Harrington has been a freelance writer since 2006. Her published articles have appeared in various print and online publications, including the "Dollar Stretcher." Previously, she owned her own business, selling handmade items online, wholesale and at crafts fairs. Harrington's specialties include small business information, crafting, decorating and gardening.