Christmas Cacti Care: What Is Your Experience With Christmas Cactus?
CACTUS CARE IS NOT A MENTAL DISORDER! IT’S JUST THE NAME OF AN ARTICLE THAT I WROTE TO GET PEOPLE READING MY BLOG POST ABOUT CHRISTMAS CAUCASI AND THEIR NEED FOR COFFEE GROUND.
Coffee Grounds Are Good For Christmas Cacti?
You may have heard that coffee grounds are good for your christmas cacti. You might think it’s just another crazy idea from a person with no experience growing or caring for their plants. But if you’re like me, then you’ve read about it before in other blogs and forums. And while there are some good reasons to use coffee grounds, they aren’t necessarily the best thing for your plants.
Here’s what you need to know about using coffee grounds on your christmas cacti:
They don’t actually provide any nutrients to your plant. They will not prevent mold growth, nor will they kill off existing fungi.
Coffee grounds contain very small amounts of nitrogen and potassium, which are both required for healthy growth of most plants. However too much nitrogen can actually prevent a plants roots from growing properly.
Coffee grounds contain some caffeine. Although this shouldn’t be a problem, it could make things worse if you are also adding other stimulants to your soil mix (tea, soda, etc).
Coffee grounds do not have any significant effect on your soil’s PH. It will not make it more acidic or basic, despite what you may have heard otherwise.
So to sum things up: coffee grounds can provide a few benefits to your plants by preventing mold growth and assisting with root growth. They can also provide nutrients that will slowly be released over time.
But they’re not going to solve all your problems, and could potentially cause new ones. Don’t expect them to replace a proper fertilizer anytime soon.
The Community’s Feedback About Christmas Cactus Fertilizer
Some people believe that fertilizer is important. Some people believe it isn’t.
No matter what you do, there’s always going to be someone who disagrees with you. But what’s important is that you don’t let these negative views influence your own decisions. It’s up to you to decide whether or not something will benefit your plants, but you should always try to remain objective and avoid falling into the trap of group think.
The truth is, some fertilizers are good for your plants. And while others aren’t necessary, they can provide your plants with an extra boost.
With that said, here’s what I’ve personally found to be good sources of nutrients:
Seabird Guano (Pelletized)
These are all high in nitrogen, and will help your plants grow quickly. Guano is quite acidic, but the other options are more neutral.
Here are some more “exotic” fertilizers that can also work well:
Roach Fish Emulsion
Ox Tail Manure
These are all high in phosphorus and magnesium. They won’t provide as much growth as nitrogen rich fertilizers, but they will help your plant’s health and appearance.
Finally, here are some fertilizers that you should avoid altogether:
Compost – While it can provide your soil with nutrients, compost is generally too “dirty” to use as a straight fertilizer. It can work as a top dressing after first passing through a filter, but it isn’t going to be potent enough to be used by itself.
Dolomite – Has some minor benefits, but it’s not something you need to add to your soil.
Blood Liver/Meat – While it is high in nitrogen, the amount that you’d need to add to your soil (in order to get the same benefits as other types of fertilizer) would be dangerous to your health.
Urine – While urine is sterile, and can provide some nutrients, it’s not recommended due to the fact that it’s too acidic. In addition, it could be dangerous to consume vegetables that were fertilized with this.
Sources & references used in this article:
Anti-ethylene treatments for potted Christmas cactus-efficacy of inhibitors of ethylene action and biosynthesis by M Serek, MS Reid – HortScience, 1993 – journals.ashs.org
Seasonal cactus care by WF Maddams, S Maddams – The Cactus and Succulent Journal of Great …, 1974 – JSTOR
Nutrition of container-grown Christmas cacti by GEC – 1996 – JSTOR
Development of a Plant Care Guide for the Veterans Hospital Horticultural Therapy Program by MI Spurway, MB Thomas – Journal of plant nutrition, 2001 – Taylor & Francis