The Epiphyllum exypetalum It is an epiphytic cactus of impressive beauty that gives us flowers of incomparable showiness and aroma to dress up the nights in our garden. Despite its striking appearance, it is a very simple plant to care for and if its needs are known, even gardeners with less time can enjoy it.
If you want to learn more about the cactus Epiphyllum oxypetalum and your carejoin us in this EcologíaVerde article.
Characteristics of the Epiphyllum oxypetalum plant
The common name of Epiphyllum oxypetalum it is kadupul floweralthough it is also known by many other names such as queen of the night, Dutchman’s pipe cactus, gallant of the night, Brahma Kamalam in India or even lady of the night, although in the latter case it should not be confused with the Cestrum nocturnuma shrub from another family that also receives that name for the ability it shares with our cactus: that of bloom at night.
The Epiphyllum exypetalum It is a plant that lives wild in almost all of Tropical America, although it is found threatened in Guatemala. It reaches heights of up to 3 meters, although only when it can grow on some other plant or support. given his epiphytic naturewhen it does not have this, its demeanor is creeping.
Its leaves, of a vivid and bright green color, are really flat segments about 10 cm wide, but the most attractive thing about this cactus are its large white flowers, up to 25 cm in diameter. doAnd when it blooms Epiphyllum oxypetalum? Always at night, closing as soon as the first rays of the sun arrive. Once pollinated, they form a red fruit. The flowers are also very fragrant, with a pleasant and unique aroma.
Find out more about epiphytic plants: what they are, types and examples in this other EcologíaVerde article that we recommend.
Location for Epiphyllum oxypetalum
The kadupul flower needs outdoor locations, since it requires all the light possible. It can grow in direct sunlight if it is not too intense, but it also does very well in semi-shade. Depending on the local climate, it will be preferable to choose one or the other.
It can grow very well both in a pot and in the same soil, although one detail must be taken into account: pests. This plant is particularly attractive to snails and other molluscs Therefore, if these voracious predators appear in your garden or area, you would do better to plant your kadupul flower in a pot, more protected from them.
We leave you this other article on How to eliminate slugs and snails naturally that may help you.
Climate for Epiphyllum oxypetalum
Like almost all plants of tropical origin, the kadupul flower does not tolerate frost well. It needs relatively warm temperatures. If you already have your Epiphyllum and winter is coming, you can transplant it to a pot with a support and store it in a lighted room during the cold months, trying to put it in a room as bright as possible, but away from windows and draughts.
Another great option, when there is no other choice but to keep it indoors, is to resort to lamps for plants. Currently there are very low cost and consumption LED models, ideal for these cases.
Take a look at this other article on LED ecological lighting to take care of the environment that may also interest you.
Epiphyllum oxypetalum irrigation
The plant is not particularly demanding in terms of irrigation:
- In the warm months: Between one and two weekly waterings will suffice, especially in times of drought.
- In the cold months: it is convenient to space the irrigations to one every ten days or fortnightly, when the upper layer of the earth has dried.
Soil for Epiphyllum oxypetalum
Being an epiphytic plant, the most important thing about the soil is that it be a light mix and, above all, with a good drainage. In a pot, mixing coconut fiber, peat and worm humus in equal parts will give rise to a rich and light substrate, particularly suitable if perlite and vermiculite are added.
In soil, it will be enough to find an area with the best possible drainage and add some earthworm humus to the soil to provide it with nutrients and beneficial microorganisms.
Find out more about coconut fiber for plants: properties and how to make it or how to make earthworm humus in these other EcologíaVerde articles that we recommend.
Fertilizer for Epiphyllum oxypetalum
As soon as the temperature exceeds 15ºC, which will normally occur in spring, it is very convenient to provide the Epiphyllum specific fertilizer for cacti. If it is done from the arrival of the heat until the end of summer, we will favor much more the development and flowering of the plant.
Here you can find more information on How to nourish plants with manures and fertilizers.
multiplication and pruning
The pruning is not necessary in the epiphyllum oxypetalum, but it is enough to regularly remove those leaves and flowers that are in poor condition so that the plant does not waste energy on them.
Their multiplication by cuttings is very fast And simple. Simply remove a stem from the plant with sharp, disinfected scissors and let it dry in semi-shade for a week. After this time, the cutting can be planted in a small pot with suitable substrate, providing it with rooting hormone if we want to maximize its chances of success. Finally, just water often but always without flooding and, in about two weeks, if everything has gone well, the cutting will have taken root.
If you are curious about multiplication by cuttings, do not hesitate to read this other post about the multiplication of fruit trees by woody cuttings.
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