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Care of the plant Rhipsalis puniceodiscus or Mistletoe Cactus.

Care of the indoor plant Rhipsalis puniceodiscus or Mistletoe Cactus

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 puniceodiscus, Rhipsalis cruciformis, Rhipsalis baccifera, Rhipsalis pachyptera, Rhipsalis cassutha, Rhipsalis oblonga, Rhipsalis pilocarpa, Rhipsalis burchellii, Rhipsalis rosea.

Common name: Mistletoe Cactus. Scientific synonyms: Lepismium puniceodiscum, Rhipsalis chrysocarpa, Lepismium chrysocarpum. This species is native to Central and South America.

They are epiphytic cacti with a pendant bearing and fine cylindrical stems of bright green or reddish-gray color that reach 1 meter (3.28 feet) in length. The small but attractive white flowers are up to 1 cm (0.39") in length. They produce decorative orange or white fruits.

They are used in hanging pots as greenhouse and indoor plants; they are ideal for well-lit kitchens and bathrooms. In summer they can be located outside without direct sun in the central hours of the day.

Rhipsalis puniceodiscus prefers a semi-shade exposure receiving direct sun in the early morning hours. It does not resist temperatures below 10 ºC (50 ºF).

The soil can be a commercial substrate for cacti with peat and coconut shell; it is important that it has good drainage.

Water moderately with lime-free water in spring, summer and fall, waiting for the substrate to dry. In winter, water very little. They need a medium-high humidity.

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

Pruning is not necessary.

They can be attacked by mealybugs, mites and aphids if the ventilation is not adequate and by fungi if there is excess watering.

They are propagated by stem cuttings in spring or summer. 

Images of the indoor plant Rhipsalis puniceodiscus or Mistletoe Cactus

Rhipsalis puniceodiscus