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Care of the plant Rhipsalis cruciformis or Lepismium cruciforme.

Care of the indoor plant Rhipsalis cruciformis or Lepismium cruciforme

The genus Rhipsalis, family Cactaceae, comprises 35 species of cacti native to tropical regions of Central and South America, Africa and Asia. Some species are: Rhipsalis cruciformis, Rhipsalis oblongaRhipsalis puniceodiscus, Rhipsalis baccifera, Rhipsalis pachyptera, Rhipsalis cassutha, Rhipsalis pilocarpa, Rhipsalis burchellii, Rhipsalis rosea.

Scientific synonyms: Lepismium cruciforme, Cactus cruciformis, Hariota cruciformis. This species is native to Brazil, Paraguay and Argentina.

They are epiphytic cacti with a pendant bearing and angular reddish stems that reach 50 cm (23.6") in length. In the areolas they do not have spines but they have white hairs. The small 1 cm (0.39") long flowers are reddish-white. They produce decorative red fruits.

They are used in hanging pots as indoor and greenhouse plants. In summer they can be located outside avoiding direct sun.

Rhipsalis cruciformis needs shade exposure and warm weather. It does not resist temperatures below 8 ºC (46.4 ºF) and does not like heat above 28 ºC (82.4 ºF).

The soil can be an orchid growing medium or a commercial indoor plant growing medium with 30% coarse sand.

Water regularly with lime-free water in spring, summer and fall, waiting for the substrate to be almost dry. In winter do not water. In summer spray the leaves from time to time with lime-free water.

Fertilize with mineral cactus fertilizer once in spring and again in summer.

They do not need pruning.

They are quite resistant plants to the usual pests and diseases.

They are propagated by stem cuttings and from seeds sown in spring. 

Images of the indoor plant Rhipsalis cruciformis or Lepismium cruciforme

Rhipsalis cruciformis
Rhipsalis cruciformis
Rhipsalis cruciformis