Easter Cactus vs. Christmas Cactus

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It's easy to confuse the Easter cactus with the Christmas cactus at first glance; their flowers are similar. But there's one big, obvious difference: Each one blooms around the time of the holiday for which it's named.

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There is slight difference between the two species. An Easter cactus has leaves that are wide and round and trimmed with a red tint. The Christmas cactus' leaves are pointed.


The Easter and Christmas cactus flowers are similar. Both plants sprout beautiful star-like flowers in a variety of reds, pinks and whites, growing from the tips of leaves.


September and October are the pre-flowering months for Christmas cactus plants. The Easter cactus' pre-flowering time is January, February and March. Both species require that they be kept dry and cool until flower buds form.


The Easter cactus, a spring bloomer, has been considered to be a symbol of rebirth. The Christmas cactus is a sign of the holidays, similar to a poinsettia. Do not fertilize the plants when they are blooming because this will interfere with flowering.

After Blooming

After the Christmas and Easter holiday seasons, the plants should be given about a 30-day rest. Place them in a cool room and provide limited water. Don't worry if they lose a few leaves; it's normal.


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