My Rebel Thanksgiving Cactus

A number of months ago I did some research on what makes a Christmas cactus blossom. I learned that what I’ve been calling a Christmas cactus is really a Thanksgiving cactus and that while the length of day has some effect on when it blossoms, temperature can override photoperiodism. I wrote a post about what I’d learned and I thought I had this plant figured out.

Silly me! The minute you think you understand something about plant growth, that’s when the plant will show that it does its own thing and doesn’t follow any rules!

Thanksgiving Cactus in Bloom

Thanksgiving Cactus in Bloom

I’m learning this from one of my Thanksgiving cacti. I have a few plants of this cactus and most of them are “following the rules” of blooming once at the end of November. But I have one plant that’s the rebel of the group. It blossomed in November just like all the others. But then it blossomed in January, again around Easter and now it’s blooming again!

I can explain the blooms in January and March based on the cool temperatures in my house. But June blossoms? This one’s a mystery to me. I guess this plant just likes to blossom and isn’t going to follow any rules.

I’m thinking of propagating this cactus that won’t stop blooming and giving some of the plants to other people. It’d be interesting to find out if it blossoms at random times for them as well. If it does, this might be a variety that could be called an “everblooming Thanksgiving cactus!”

It makes no sense from a botanical perspective but it’s fun to look outside and see a Thanksgiving cactus in bloom in the heat of summer. I can’t wait to see when it’ll blossom next!



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