Cereus

Cereus

Cereus is a cactus native to Central and South America, from where it spread to tropical and subtropical regions of Africa and Asia, giving life to new species. The plant has many other names, such as Queen of the Night and Princess of the Night. This name is a generalizing term for about seven different genera, which have the characteristic of night flowering. Cereus, blooming at night, forms flattened stems, similar to a pencil, which most people call leaves. On those leaves that have had about two active growing seasons, flower buds develop, formed in jagged recesses along the edge of the leaf.

Home care of cereus

cereus
cereus

In all regions, except the warmest, cereus is grown as indoor plants. In spring, summer and autumn, they should remain in a sunny place. In winter, if possible, it is necessary to move it to a cooler place so that it can rest. Protect plants from the hot midday sun, which can burn the leaves. In spring and summer, plants give a lot of new shoots. Water regularly, but let the soil dries out between watering.

Landing instructions

Start with high-quality commercial soil for growing cacti and succulents. This will ensure soil sterility and the absence of pests. Many of them contain soft starter fertilizers. If you decide to prepare your own soil mixture, mix sand and ordinary soil mixture in equal parts.

  • Choose a container with a drainage hole, or be prepared to drill holes if they are not.
  • Prepare the container by filling with potting soil at a distance of up to 5 cm from the edge. Make a hole in the center of the soil that is large enough that the root clod of cereus can fit into it.
  • If the plant is prickly, be sure to wear gloves for protection. Rubber gloves are suitable for working with plants with small spikes, but if the plant has long or sharp needles, leather gloves provide greater protection.
  • Small plants can be safely moved with the help of kitchen forceps. To move larger plants, it is recommended to wrap the plant with a paper towel or paper. For very large or prickly plants, use a layer of newspaper or wrapping paper for additional protection. Rotate gently, not too tightly, so as not to crush the spines. Glue the outer layer of paper in several places so that it fits snugly. As soon as the plant is transferred to a new pot and fixed, you can carefully remove the package.
  • Remove the plant from the pot. Place it in the planting hole and press the soil tightly around the roots, simply covering the root lump. For strongly prickly plants, use a stick, spatula or other tools to move the soil and keep the distance between the arms and spines.
  • Transplant cereus every 2 years. If the roots are not tied to the pot, you can use the same container. If you need a larger pot, choose it with a diameter of no more than 3-5 cm larger than the existing one.

Temperature

It is important to emphasize that it is impossible to plant cereus in places with a temperature below 10 C. They should receive direct sunlight, and the more intense it is, the better; Avoid all areas with low lighting.

Irrigation

Always monitor the needs of your plant in watering after receiving it. Before drinking cereus, it is better to first check the soil moisture level to make sure that it is not wet directly below the surface. In addition, before the first watering, consider the possibility of aeration of the soil of your plant.

Cereus likes to dry completely between watering. The most common mistake that is made with these plants is excessive watering. Make sure you let the soil dry completely before watering the plant. Cereus Cactus are prone to root rot, so it is very important not to water the plant when moisture is detected in the soil. In the winter months, the frequency of irrigation should decrease to once a month.

Instructions for fertilization

Fertilizers are available in many forms: granular, slow-release, liquid, organic or synthetic. Determine which method of application is best for this situation, and choose a product with a nutritional balance designed for cacti and succulents.

Too much fertilizer can damage cereus, so it’s important to follow the instructions on the packaging to determine how much and how often plants need to be fed.

Slow-release fertilizers are the right and carefree choice for container plants. Most often, one application can provide plants with the necessary level of nutrition throughout the season.

Universal fertilizer for indoor plants can be used to feed these cactus, but it must be diluted to one-quarter of the usual norm.

Cereus pruning instructions

Cacti can be cut to remove dead or damaged parts or to maintain a certain size or shape. Pruning stimulates new growth, branching and gives plants parts that can be used for reproduction. Pruning of the plant also contributes to the appearance of shoots and reduces the plant’s need for the development of a larger root system. This is important because the roots are in a confined space.

Reproduction of cereus cactus

Cereus breeds in two ways: seeds and cuttings. The latter is achieved by cutting off parts of the stem of the plant and placing them in a mixture of 50% peat and 50% sand. The composition should be stored in a humid state, at the optimum temperature and in the light.

Cactus cubs that grow on the main plant are known as “puppies.” In some species, they can become very thick. Puppies can be cut with a sharp knife at an angle of 45 degrees.

Allow the cut areas to dry in the air until callosum skin forms and can be placed in moist sand to root and eventually form new plants.

Pests

Hot, dry air creates an ideal climate for ticks in winter. The web is especially easy to recognize by the convex edges of the leaves.

Infection with mealybugs is easy to spot on Cereus in the form of a small network of white cotton mass.

First, treat the plant with a mixture of insecticidal soap or oil of it and water. Follow the instructions for breeding on the vial. Dip a toothbrush with soft bristles, cotton swab or paper towel in the mixture and apply to the treated areas. Lightly spray the mixture on the plant and soil and let the plant rest. Repeat at seven-day intervals until the pests disappear. Be sure to treat the plant in the evening, since the insecticidal mixture can burn the flesh of the plant under the direct rays of the sun.

RELATED POST

Leave a Reply