Fishbone Cactus (Ric Rac Cactus) Care & Propagation Guide

Written by Ivy

Dec 06 2021

Fishbone Cactus (Ric Rac Cactus) Care & Propagation Guide
In addition to the leaves like fish bones, fishbone cactus is also a very special epiphyte. It originally grows on trees and depends on deciduous humus and nutrients in the air. Fishbone cactus belongs to cactus plant, but does not like sun exposure and excessive direct sunlight.

Fishbone Cactus Quick Info

Botanical/Scientific Name Epiphyllum Anguliger
Common Name Cryptocereus Anthonyanus
Varieties Ric Rac cactus, Zigzag, Fishbone orchid cactus
Uses Indoor office decoration purposes
Origin Mexico
Light Care Indirect light
Soil Care Loose, well draining soil
Temperature Care Between 60°F and 77°F during summer
Humidity Care Mist it often
Watering Enough water
Pruning Care Cut off any possible dead or dried stems
Fertilizer Care High-quality fertilizer
Propagation A piece of stem to start an entirely new plant
Toxic Non-toxic to cats and dogs

Fishbone Cactus Care in Detail

Fishbone Cactus Care & Propagation Guide

Fishbone Cactus Watering

During the growth period, it is the best condition for us to let the basin soil have a certain humidity and tide instead of humidity. If only fishbone cactus didn't need to pour too much water in winter and let the basin soil dry. Fishbone cactus is afraid of direct sunlight and exposure. Avoid too much direct sunlight, otherwise the leaves will turn yellow and wither. When maintaining it, we'd better put fishbone cactus in a well ventilated and well illuminated environment, which is more conducive to the growth of fish bones and arrows. Fishbone cactus can produce pink flowers when properly maintained. It usually blooms at night, and the flowering period lasts for about one or two days.

Soil for Fishbone Cactus

When we plant fishbone cactus in pots, we must prepare fertile, soft, breathable and permeable sandy soil for it. The soil for cultivating fishbone cactus can use ordinary orchid soil. We can add some bluestone, snake sawdust and bark to the soil to increase the water drainage capacity of the soil, and appropriately add some peat soil and compost soil, This can ensure that the soil of fishbone cactus has a certain fertility.

Fishbone Cactus Light Requirements

When we maintain fishbone cactus, we must maintain a high air humidity and a warm environment all year round. Fishbone cactus is afraid of cold, and the minimum maintenance temperature in winter should be kept above 7 ~ 10 degrees. During the maintenance of Fishbone Cactus, we should avoid air drying and keep the environment ventilated. Spray water should be sprayed regularly to increase the humidity. Fishbone Cactus also needs to keep some scattered light and avoid excessive shade. Fishbone cactus is afraid of direct sunlight and exposure. Avoid too much sunlight, otherwise the leaves are easy to turn yellow and wither. When the weather is cool in spring and autumn, the sun is not too strong, so you can give appropriate direct light. When the temperature is too high in summer, you must avoid excessive exposure.

Fishbone Cactus Temperature Care

Because fishbone cactus, a tropical plant, likes warmth and light and is not resistant to cold, we should take cold proof and warm keeping measures for potted plants in time in winter, otherwise fishbone cactus plants are easy to be frostbitten or even frozen to death. As long as the ambient temperature is controlled above 10 ° C, it is often safer. Therefore, in winter, we try to place fishbone cactus in a warm room near the windowsill for maintenance.

Fishbone Cactus Humidity Requirements

Air humidity is also very important to fishbone cactus. Epiphytic species are native to tropical rain forest areas with high humidity. Fishbone cactus cultivation sites must maintain high air humidity. It grows best under the conditions of soft and sufficient light, high air humidity and high temperature not exceeding 35C. If the air is dry, coupled with high temperature and strong light, it will often cause yellowing of the epidermis and shrinkage of the stem meat.

Fishbone Cactus Fertilizer

The flowering period of fishbone cactus is probably from April to June in spring and summer, but different regions and planting environment often have a certain impact on the flowering period, either ahead or behind, which is normal. But if we want it to bloom, we must have enough nutrients. Usually, phosphorus and potassium fertilizer should be applied every half a month after March, which can accelerate fishbone cactus to differentiate flower buds and promote flowering.

Fishbone Cactus Pruning

Fishbone cactus is very simple to breed. It doesn't have much nutrients and water. It can be raised well as long as it is placed there. But if you want to raise fishbone cactus very vigorously, you must have an appropriate amount of fishbone cactus pruning branches and buds. When fishbone cactus pruning, you must cut off those very thin stem nodes, and leave only two small tender stems on the branches and buds on each stem node. The reason for this is not only to make the plant beautiful, but also to reduce unnecessary nutrients, so as to make the plant grow faster.

If fishbone cactus is properly cultured, it will also produce brilliant and bright flowers. Many flower lovers will forget this step in the illustration of cactus pruning method, that is, after the flowering period, after the fishbone cactus flowers have failed, the residual flowers will be cut off. Cut off the remaining flowers in time and add an appropriate amount of water to make the cactus bloom again.

Fishbone cactus pruning tools are nothing more than pruning scissors or sharp knives, but all fishbone cactus pruning tools must be very sharp. Because the fishbone cactus plant has a lot of water content, only sharp tools can reduce the size of the incision and be as smooth as possible, which is conducive to plant wound repair.

When we fishbone cactus pruning, we must be in a relatively dry environment. Only in this way can it be conducive to the recovery of cactus. Pruning is best done in spring and autumn. Never choose to prune the plant in cold winter. The cactus is dormant at this time. Fishbone cactus pruning will harm the health of the plant. And when pruning, the weather must be sunny. Don't prune in rainy season.
Fishbone cactus pruning needs to be maintained in time. Although fishbone cactus has tenacious vitality, juice will flow out of the cut after pruning. Therefore, after pruning, we must pay attention to leaving the cactus in a cool astigmatism environment, reduce watering, and wait for the cut to dry slowly in the shade before normal breeding.

Fishbone Cactus Repotting

We should pay attention to the selection of flowerpots when we are in fishbone cactus repotting. The main reason is that there are holes at the bottom. Because fishbone cactus repotting does not require high fertilizer during maintenance, the basin is too large, which is not conducive to drainage. As for the shape and pattern, it depends on your own hobby. If the soil has no hardening or other problems, we can continue to use the original soil. If we need to change the soil, we can use ordinary garden soil. Some coarse sand can be added, so it is not easy to accumulate water. We remember to detoxify the soil before fishbone cactus repotting.

How many steps does fishbone cactus repotting take? Of course, there are three steps. The first step is to take out the cactus. The headache for many people in this step should be that cactus has thorns. In fact, in order to prevent being scratched by cactus thorns during fishbone cactus repotting, you can first wear plastic gloves, then clamp the cactus with tweezers, then knock on the flower pot, or loosen the soil, and then take it out when the soil is loose.
The second step is to trim the roots of fishbone cactus, check whether the roots have diseased roots and rotten roots, remove some if not, remove the old roots and put them into a new basin, then fix the plants with soil, cover the soil and gently compact them. We should water the fishbone cactus repotting immediately to keep the soil moist. After a month or so, when the cactus grows new roots, we can start normal maintenance.

Fishbone Cactus Pest & Disease Control

Fishbone cactus and other types of succulent plants store water in their fleshy tissues, and plants use this water to grow, blossom, bear fruit and reproduce. The original land of fishbone cactus is generally dry and short of water. In this way, fishbone cactus can use the water stored in them to live for a long time without external water supply. On the other hand, they can't quickly consume water in their bodies. This way of life repeats itself in the original place. However, in the case of artificially cultured cactus, people can provide cactus with more water than fishbone cactus needs, so that cactus becomes more "plump and obese" than its original growth after absorbing too much water. However, when this situation often occurs, it is excessive watering, which may lead to the cracking of sphere or stem, Although the cactus will be repaired automatically after cracking, there is a more serious fishbone cactus pest & disease, which is rotten roots (especially watering at low temperature). If it is not treated in time, the whole sphere or plant will rot.

For this fishbone cactus pest and disease, the first thing is to stop watering! Other ways can be considered is to change the basin. After digging out the plants, don't rush to plant them, but first put the whole plant in a ventilated and sunshaded place to dry for one to two weeks, and wait for the roots and spheres to dry before putting them into the basin. If the sphere cracks, its damage is permanent. You can't do anything, just wait for the fishbone cactus to be slowly covered by the new parts. If the plant begins to decay, whether it can be saved depends on the degree of decay. If only the root decays, the root can be cut off and wait for the sphere to root again. If both the root and the sphere are rotten, fishbone cactus is equivalent to death.

Fishbone Cactus Propagation

Fishbone Cactus Care & Propagation Guide

Fishbone Cactus Propagation from Cutting

For cutting propagation of Ric Rac cactus, first cut 1 to 4 stem nodes or large branches that can branch as cuttings; We should dry the cuttings for three days before fishbone cactus cutting propagation;
Then we can prepare fishbone cactus cutting propagation matrix: use nutrient soil or river sand and peat soil as cutting materials;
After selecting the substrate, we directly put the dried cuttings into the soil. After the fishbone cactus is inserted, we should put it in a warm and sunny place for maintenance. Pay attention to less watering and wait for rooting and germination.

Fishbone Cactus Propagation from Seed

Fishbone cactus can grow new varieties through song propagation. First, you can pollinate the flowers of fishbone cactus. With your help, just dip the pollen on the pistil with a cotton swab; After a period of growth, the fruit will mature, and then the seeds in the fruit can be taken out and cleaned.
After cleaning, we need to wrap fishbone cactus seeds with gauze; Then prepare the basin soil, pour water, and then you can sow the seeds in the basin soil and keep them in the shade. After the seedlings are sent out, they can be transplanted, planted and maintained.

Fishbone Cactus Grafting propagation

In the fishbone cactus grading promotion, we should first select robust ball seedlings without bacteria, cut off the tip first, and then peel off the skin. Then we can prepare the well-growing leaf cactus plant as an auxiliary rootstock, and then cut off the bottom of the ball seedling to expose the ball core. Then we need to disinfect all the tools used for grafting. After fishbone cactus grading promotion, we can move to the place with weak light for maintenance, and pay attention to soil loosening and drainage.

Fishbone Cactus Care FAQs

Fishbone cactus flower

In fact, in many people's minds, cactus plants are difficult to bloom, or they will open that kind of very small flowers, which has little appreciation value. In fact, fishbone cactus can produce beautiful flowers, and the flowers are particularly bright. If we have seen it, we should find that the flowers of fishbone cactus are white, but not all white, mixed with some pink. After many people have seen fishbone cactus bloom, they will think that its flowers are more beautiful than Epiphyllum.

Fishbone cactus can produce large pink flowers when properly maintained. It usually blooms at night, and the flowering period can last for about one or two days
The flowerpot for cultivating fishbone cactus must have good drainage, keep the soil loose and breathable, and avoid soil ponding. Although fishbone cactus likes high air humidity, it is afraid that the soil will be wet for a long time, and the basin soil can not always have water.

In general, fishbone cactus is a cactus plant belonging to the genus verbena. It is also a plant that blooms at night, which is very similar to Epiphyllum. It has branches that can grow continuously, and its branches have serrated leaves.

Originally, the fish bone arrow grew on the tree. It will rely on the leaves falling from the tree. After rotting in the soil, it will produce a lot of nutrients and live on these nutrients. Although it belongs to cactus, it is different from cactus. Fishbone cactus is afraid of sunlight, and it is very afraid of direct sunlight. Fish bone arrows usually bloom at night, which is very similar to Epiphyllum. So if we want to enjoy its flowers, we can only wait until evening.
If we want to breed fishbone cactus, we must maintain a humid and warm environment. Fishbone cactus is native to the tropical rain forest in Mexico, which makes it more suitable for growing in a humid environment. We can use it as a potted culture indoors, but we need to give it a suitable growth environment. As mentioned earlier, fishbone cactus depends on rotten leaves to obtain nutrients. Now that we have cultivated it, It doesn't need to rely on other plants to grow. We can supplement it with enough nutrients to let fishbone cactus grow by itself.

Fishbone cactus problems

Fishbone cactus requires high growth period, and fishbone cactus of tropical rain forest should be maintained at the scattered light. During the dormancy period, water less, and protect children at home to avoid stabbing. What fishbone cactus problems need our attention?
Fishbone cactus does not have strict requirements for soil, but it must be loose and permeable. The roots of fishbone cactus will release organic acids. If the soil itself is very sticky, coupled with its organic acids, the soil will harden. After watering, the water is not easy to evaporate, which will cause rotten roots.
Fishbone cactus is more sensitive to light during the growth period. If it is in summer, direct exposure to the sun will cause burns. Fishbone cactus has a certain phenomenon of chasing light. If the indoor light can not meet the requirements, its growth point will face the source of light and become thin and thin.
The water management of fishbone cactus should grasp a principle, which should be dry rather than wet. It is OK to dry and pour thoroughly.
Fishbone cactus can grow normally when it is above 5 degrees. Individual varieties can withstand low temperature, but they are not resistant to low temperature for a long time. Freezing injury will also occur below zero for a long time.
During the dormancy period and low-temperature dormancy period of fishbone cactus, you must pay attention to water control, do not water, and do not water too much, otherwise decay will occur. Some of its bristles will stab people during maintenance.
Sandy soil or sandy loam with good drainage and air permeability and calcareous content is required. The new cactus should not be watered. Spray it several times a day. After half a month, it can be watered little. After a month, the new roots will grow out to water properly. When the temperature is low in winter and the plant enters dormancy, watering should be controlled.
When the temperature is low in winter and fishbone cactus goes into dormancy, we should control watering. After spring, with the increase of temperature, plant dormancy is gradually relieved, and watering can be gradually increased. Apply rotten thin liquid fertilizer every 10 days to half a month, and do not apply fertilizer in winter.