Gardening Tips

Epiphyllum anguliger: care

Epiphyllum anguliger: care

When we talk about hanging succulents, there is a plant that we cannot ignore. It is commonly known as the fishbone cactus and it is one of the most unique and decorative looking houseplants that we can have at home.

If you want to surprise your visitors or simply improve the atmosphere of your home with this striking cactus, keep reading this complete guide from EcologíaVerde where we tell you everything about the Epiphyllum anguliger and your care.

Characteristics of Epiphyllum anguliger

Its scientific name is Epiphyllum anguliger, although it is more common to refer to it as ric rac cactus, zig zag orchid cactus or, as we have already said, fishbone cactus. All these names make unequivocal reference to the particular form of its fleshy and flat stems, which fall as they grow and zigzag in the form of a double saw or the typical herringbone.

It is an epiphytic cactus native to Mexico, which in its natural environment grows on the branches or trunks of other trees, in tropical environments and far from the desert aridity that the word cactus brings to mind for many. Its stems reach a length of about 30 cm and the plant produces large and very showy flowersso much so that they are one of the main attractions of this species.

If you want to know more about epiphytic plants: what they are, types and examples, do not hesitate to take a look at this article that we recommend.

Epiphyllum anguliger: care - Characteristics of Epiphyllum anguliger

When Epiphyllum Anguliger Blooms

The beautiful flowers of the fishbone cactus can reach a size of up to 20 cm, something very considerable considering the small size of the plant itself. They are pink or yellow, with very striking tones, with peduncles that sprout from the end of the leaves.

They are nocturnal flowers, with a sweet aroma of great intensity, and the plant produces them when the conditions are optimal, between late fall and early winterwith the arrival of the cold.

We leave you this other EcologíaVerde post with some aromatic indoor plants that you may find interesting.

Climate for Epiphyllum anguliger

The fishbone cactus is a plant of tropical origin and, like practically all tropical plants, it needs an environment that shares certain characteristics with that type of climate.

It does not support very high or very low temperatures, having to be kept between 10ºC and 25ºC, being able to withstand somewhat higher temperatures only if it is well protected from the sun. Due to this, its most common cultivation in temperate climates is as an indoor plant.

In addition, the Epiphyllum anguliger will appreciate an environment that is not too dry, with some humidity. Since our homes tend to be fairly dry in most areas, it will be necessary spray water or give it moisture otherwise.

This article on outdoor tropical plants could also interest you to learn more about the subject.

Location for Epiphyllum anguliger

This plant needs a large amount of light, although it does not require direct incidence. As with many tropical epiphytes, it will suffice to have it in a very bright but covered location from the direct incidence of the sun’s rays, especially during the hours of greatest intensity.

Epiphyllum anguliger: care - Location for Epiphyllum anguliger

Substrate for Epiphyllum anguliger

This cactus needs, like almost all epiphytes, a very light and loose substrate, which provides the best possible drainage. Without good enough drainage, its roots are likely to rot from excess moisture and the plant will wilt.

Use specific substrate for cacti or epiphytic plants that you can enrich with earthworm humus and perlite to improve both its nutrients and its water retention properties. It is vital that, if grown in a pot, it has drainage holes.

Discover How to make earthworm humus and Perlite for plants: what it is, what it is for and how it is used in these other two EcologíaVerde posts that we suggest.

Epiphyllum anguliger irrigation

The most important thing is to maintain an adequate level of environmental humidity, which can be achieved by:

  • Spraying water daily on the plant.
  • Placing the pot on a tray with water and stones on it, so that evaporation provides constant moisture.

Regarding watering, the fishbone cactus is not demanding, and it will suffice to water it every 3 or 4 days in the warm monthsallowing the substrate to dry out slightly between waterings, and weekly in cold months.

Check this article on How to choose the right pot for your plant, here.

Subscriber of the Epiphyllum anguliger

Most epiphytic plants need an occasional supply of fertilizer to continue growing strong, since their roots are not good at absorbing nutrients. It is best to use specific fertilizer for succulents at the beginning of spring or add some earthworm humus to its substrate.

To learn more about what fertilizers are and their types, check out this post that we suggest.

Transplantation and multiplication of the fishbone cactus

When the leaves fall and cover the pot too much and the pot is too big for its container, there are two options: transplant it to a new larger potthe most recommended, or prune their stems carefullythus being able to use the cut sections to multiply the cactus by cuttings.

To propagate it this way is very simple and it is enough to have cut the cutting with very sharp and disinfected scissors, preferably between spring and summer. The cuttings can be planted after letting them dry for a few hours, it being best not to water them until they show signs of having begun to take root, making the stem stand up.

If you have doubts about How to reproduce cacti by cuttings, do not hesitate to read this article from EcologíaVerde where we explain it to you.

If you want to read more articles similar to Epiphyllum anguliger: carewe recommend that you enter our Garden Care category.

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