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Let The Holidays Begin

christmas cactus

For the past few days, I have seen so many posts from local garden centers about their Thanksgiving/ Christmas Cacti that have arrived. I remember when they would come at Behnke’s, all the tight buds just waiting to burst open in your home. There are so many signs that the holidays are approaching; however, this was a big one for me. There were many other signs like our Christmas Shop opening up, but after all, a garden center is all about the plants.

This picture (above) I am sharing I have seen for the past few years on Facebook. I thought it was so magnificent I just wanted to show you. The all-knowing Facebook says it is over 100 years old. Who know if that is true or not. I do know that many of you have cuttings of the original plant from your loved ones. I can’t think of anything better than to pass on something you have loved and cared for.

I was going to go into the care of these remarkable plants, but in a quick search on our web site (we have so much information there!) I found a few more articles on this subject. One from Larry Hurley, All about Christmas Cactus: The Easiest Flowering Houseplant, has all the information you need. For me, we pretty much ignore ours.

christmas cactus

Many of you would ask just “what is the difference between a Thanksgiving Cactus and a Christmas Cactus”? I never gave it too much thought, being the non-horticulturist in the family but I figured it had to do with when it bloomed. That said, one of our experts at the garden center explained to me about the leaves.

The Thanksgiving Cactus leaves have sharp points on them, while the Christmas Cactus has more of a rounded edge. So there you have it! Most importantly is, the care is the same. But what about if your Thanksgiving Cactus blooms at Easter? Sigh… just enjoy it as I have.

Stephanie Fleming

Stephanie Fleming was raised at Behnke’s Nurseries in Beltsville. Her Mom, Sonja, was one of Albert & Rose Behnke’s four children. She was weeding from the moment she could walk and hiding as soon as she was old enough to run, so many weeds, so little time. Although she quickly learned how to pull out a perennial and get taken off of weed pulling duty.

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