Photo by Melody

PlantFiles: Thanksgiving Cactus, Holiday Cactus, Crab Cactus
Schlumbergera truncata 'Thor-Britta'

Family: Cactaceae (kak-TAY-see-ee) (Info)
Genus: Schlumbergera (shlum-BER-ger-uh) (Info)
Species: truncata (trunk-AH-tuh) (Info)
Cultivar: Thor-Britta

8 members have or want this plant for trade.

Tropicals and Tender Perennials
Cactus and Succulents

6-12 in. (15-30 cm)
12-18 in. (30-45 cm)

9-12 in. (22-30 cm)
12-15 in. (30-38 cm)

USDA Zone 10b: to 1.7 C (35 F)
USDA Zone 11: above 4.5 C (40 F)

Sun Exposure:
Light Shade


Bloom Color:
White/Near White

Bloom Time:
Mid Fall
Late Fall/Early Winter
Mid Winter


Other details:
This plant is suitable for growing indoors
Average Water Needs; Water regularly; do not overwater
Provides winter interest
Suitable for growing in containers

Soil pH requirements:
6.6 to 7.5 (neutral)

Patent Information:

Propagation Methods:
From softwood cuttings

Seed Collecting:
N/A: plant does not set seed, flowers are sterile, or plants will not come true from seed

Click thumbnail
to view:

By hanna1
Thumbnail #1 of Schlumbergera truncata by hanna1

By berrygirl
Thumbnail #2 of Schlumbergera truncata by berrygirl

By obatalov
Thumbnail #3 of Schlumbergera truncata by obatalov


5 positives
No neutrals
No negatives

Gardeners' Notes:

Positive steadycam3 On Jan 25, 2009, steadycam3 from Houston Heights, TX (Zone 9a) wrote:

I have had this plant since 1991 and Ive divided and shared it many times. It gets so big (about 3 feet across) and in bloom it is just awesome to behold! When I accidentally break a branch, I always root it and start new plants in case something should happen to the "Mother". It's a beautiful pale pink with darker pink deep inside the bloom. It has the type stems with points, not the smooth-side ones. I have it on a shaded SW porch here now but kept it inside for many years too. Over the years Ive corrected the soil from plain potting soil to a better and better draining mixture. Otherwise, its easy to over water and rot the roots. Extremely carefree plant that gives more than it gets!

Positive benzbaby On Dec 15, 2006, benzbaby from Hilton Head Island, SC wrote:

I've had my Thanksgiving cactus for approx. 15 years. It's huge, 2 ft.x18 in. Yes, 2 FEET wide! I've split it twice over the years as it was too heavy to lift. When I lived on Long Island, NY I left it outside from May to frost. Ignored it, fertilized with Miracle Grow, and watered when I remembered. Here in SC, I keep it outside on a screened in porch, part shade/part sun. I bring it in when we have very cold nights, which isn't often. Soil is 1/3 vermiculite,1/3 reg.potting soil, 1/3 coarse sand. At Thanksgiving, the plant is an absolute mass of pink! People are astounded of the beauty and size. This is a gem of a plant, and I recommend it highly to folks who don't seem to have a "green thumb" as it's a "no brainer".

Positive Scarlete On Dec 4, 2005, Scarlete from Tampa, FL (Zone 9b) wrote:

Mine stays on my front porch. It gets filtered sun throughout the day. The winter temps before blooming in Mid to late December are usually in the 50's or rarely in the 40's. It's December 4th, and I have blooms forming on the tips now.

This plant gets ignored. A lot. It's rootbound right now. I water it whenever I think about it, but usually will only remember to in Spring (when I'm gardening out front anyway) or when blooms start to form. That's also the only time I fertilize it. I'll be repotting with Cactus soil this spring.

Despite my ignoring it, or maybe because I can.. I LOVE this plant. It does everything on it's on. I don't have to put it in the closet to force a bloom, and the blooms are marvelous. A pale pink, almost peach color, getting lighter towards the tip. Once it blooms I'll get some pictures of it.

Most of the pictures for the Christmas Cactus are actually Thanksgiving Cactus. The leaves on the Christmas Cactus are smooth, while the leaves on the Thanksgiving Cactus have points. I prefer the Thanksgiving Cactus. (:

Positive MaryE On Jun 10, 2005, MaryE from Baker City, OR (Zone 5b) wrote:

Mine grows in a pot in the greenhouse, rootbound, getting dried out sometimes, bright light, temps over 90 quite often and it still blooms. It had blooms on it about 2 months ago but puts on it's main show around the holidays. It's a tough plant in some ways.

Positive hanna1 On Dec 20, 2004, hanna1 from Castro Valley, CA (Zone 9a) wrote:

Sunlight is beneficial in mid-winter, Ideal temperatures 70F-80F. Growning season is April-September. Do not let temps rise above 90F. Bright light/ night temperature 55F-65F.


This plant has been said to grow in the following regions:

Bellflower, California
Castro Valley, California
San Diego, California
Valley Center, California
Tampa, Florida (2 reports)
Braselton, Georgia
Poughkeepsie, New York
Bandon, Oregon
Mercer, Pennsylvania
Red Lion, Pennsylvania
Okatie, South Carolina
Brazoria, Texas
Houston, Texas

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