Schlumbergera gaertneri (Easter Cactus)

Schlumbergera gaertneri

Last updated on August 5th, 2022 at 02:26 am

Schlumbergera gaertneri, commonly known as the Easter cactus, Hatiora gaertneri, or Rhipsalidopsis gaertneri, are beautiful plants native to Brazil and Uruguay. If you want to start growing your own Schlumbergera gaertneri, here are some care tips to help keep your plant happy and healthy throughout the year.

Easter Cactus is an epiphytic cactus native to Brazil, Paraguay, and northern Argentina. The Schlumbergera gaertneri grows abundantly in the rainforests of Brazil, especially in the coastal regions of Rio de Janeiro and Santa Catarina. It can also be found in the southern part of Argentina and parts of Paraguay, where they tend to inhabit forests alongside streams and rivers.

Origin and distribution

Schlumbergera gaertneri is a cactus native to Brazil. It is closely related to Rhipsalidopsis gaertneri and Hatiora gaertneri, both of which are also native to Brazil. Schlumbergera gaertneri is found in the wild in the states of Rio de Janeiro and Espirito Santo. In some regions, they grow at elevations up to 2,500 meters above sea level.

Rhipsalidopsis gaertneri can be found from Bahia northward along the Atlantic coast and inland as far as Minas Gerais. They grow at elevations up to 3,000 meters above sea level on dry rocky soil or dry red earthy clay soil.

Hatiora gaertneri grows primarily in two areas: southern Brazil and Paraguay, Uruguay. Hatiora gaertneri has been introduced into greenhouses throughout Europe where it is widely cultivated.

Schlumbergera gaertneri propagation

Schlumbergera gaertneri

Schlumbergera gaertneri can be propagated by stem or leaf cuttings. To propagate by stem cuttings, remove a section of stem with at least two nodes and pot it in the moist cactus mix. To propagate by leaf cuttings, remove a healthy leaf and allow the wound to callous for a few days before potting in the moist cactus mix. Keep the cutting in bright, indirect light and water when the soil has dried out.

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New roots will form along the buried portion of the cutting and within a month it should be ready to transplant into individual pots. It is not uncommon for flowers to appear on mature plants after periods of stress such as drying out slightly or being moved.

Easter cactus care information

Schlumbergera gaertneri

Schlumbergera gaertneri is a beautiful houseplant that’s easy to care for. Native to Brazil, these cacti are known for their colorful flowers that bloom in spring and summer. When caring for your Easter cactus, be sure to give it bright light and well-drained soil.

Allow the soil to dry out between waterings, and fertilize monthly during the growing season. With a little TLC, your Easter cactus will thrive indoors!

Light requirement

Schlumbergera gaertneri, or Easter cactus, is a holiday plant that brightens up any home during the winter months. This cactus is native to Brazil and thrives in bright, indirect sunlight. When choosing a location for your Easter cactus, make sure to pick a spot that receives plenty of light but is out of the direct sun.

If you notice the leaves starting to yellow or the stems getting leggy, this is a sign that your plant isn’t getting enough light.

Soil/potting mix

Schlumbergera gaertneri prefers a well-draining, slightly acidic potting mix. You can make your own potting mix by mixing two parts perlite or coarse sand with one part peat moss. Be sure to add a small amount of lime to adjust the pH. If you’re not sure about the pH, you can always get a soil test kit at your local nursery or garden center.


Water your Easter cactus when the soil is dry to the touch. Don’t let it sit in water, as this can lead to root rot. Aim to keep the soil evenly moist but not soggy. If the plant gets too dry, the leaves will start to wrinkle. When watering, be sure to use tepid water.

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Allow some of the water to seep through the pot’s drainage holes before dumping any excess. You may also choose to spray your plants with a water bottle or mister every few days instead of watering them from beneath their pots.


A good fertilizer for Schlumbergera gaertneri is one that is high in phosphorus. This will encourage blooming. The fertilizer should be applied every two weeks during the growing season, and then every month during the winter. When applying fertilizer, be sure to water it well. Too much fertilizer can burn the roots of the plant.


Schlumbergera Gaertneri prefers a temperature around 70 degrees Fahrenheit. They can tolerate temperatures as low as 50 degrees and as high as 85 degrees, but they will not flower if the temperature is outside of this range. If you keep your Schlumbergera Gaertneri outdoors, make sure to bring it inside if the temperature drops below 50 degrees or rises above 85 degrees.


Easter cacti are native to Brazil and prefer high humidity. If your home is on the dry side, try placing your plant on a pebble tray or grouping it with other plants. You can also mist your plant regularly or use a humidifier. Keep an eye on your plant and adjust as needed to maintain healthy growth.

The ideal humidity range is 40-50%. If you notice white powdery patches developing on the surface of your soil, you may need to increase the humidity levels in your home. Be sure to clean any leaves that develop powdery patches by wiping them gently with a cloth dipped in soapy water.


Schlumbergera gaertneri is a succulent that blooms around the Easter holiday. When pruning, be sure to cut just above a node (the point where leaves or stems branch off), as this will encourage new growth. You can prune your Easter cactus any time of year, but it’s best to do so after it has finished blooming.

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Wait until the old flower stalks are dry and brown before cutting them back to avoid accidentally damaging new buds. Clean up fallen petals from under the plant with a vacuum cleaner. If you’re looking for more tips on how to take care of your Schlumbergera Gaertneri, we have an entire blog post dedicated to these easy-to-care-for plants!

When to repot

The best time to repot your Schlumbergera gaertneri is in the spring after it has finished blooming. Carefully remove the plant from its current pot and shake off any excess soil. Choose a new pot that is only slightly larger than the old one and has drainage holes. Fill the bottom of the pot with gravel, then add fresh potting mix. Gently firm the mix around the roots and water well.

Place the plant in a bright spot out of direct sunlight. Water when the top inch or so of soil feels dry. Apply a balanced fertilizer such as 20-20-20 once per month during the growing season and less often during winter dormancy.

Dormancy/Winter rest

When the days start getting shorter and the temperature starts to drop, your Schlumbergera gaertneri (Easter cactus) will start to enter its dormancy period. This is a natural process that helps the plant conserve energy and survive the winter months.

During dormancy, your plant will stop growing and producing flowers. It’s important to give your plant a rest during this time so it can rejuvenate itself.

Flowers & fragrance

Schlumbergera gaertneri

The Schlumbergera gaertneri, or Easter cactus, is a beautiful plant that produces stunning flowers. The flowers are typically red, pink, or white and have a wonderful fragrance. When taking care of this plant, it is important to remember that it prefers filtered sunlight and needs to be watered regularly.

Additionally, the soil should be well-draining to avoid root rot. With proper care, your Easter cactus will thrive and provide you with beautiful blooms each spring.

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Growth rate

Schlumbergera gaertneri is a slow-growing cactus that can reach up to 2 feet tall. It typically blooms in the spring, but can also bloom in the fall and winter.


Schlumbergera Gaertneri is not considered to be toxic to humans or animals. However, the plant can cause stomach upset if ingested in large quantities. If you suspect your pet has eaten a Schlumbergera Gaertneri plant, contact your veterinarian immediately.

USDA hardiness zones

Schlumbergera gaertneri thrive best in USDA hardiness zones 9b-11.

Pests and diseases

Easter cacti are relatively resistant to pests and diseases, but they can be susceptible to mealybugs, aphids, and spider mites. If you notice any of these pests on your plant, you can treat them with insecticidal soap or neem oil. Easter cacti are also susceptible to root rot, so make sure to plant them in well-draining soil.