orchid cactus

DC metro, VA(Zone 7b)

Hi folks,

I'm wondering if anyone in the DC area summers their orchid cactus outside? Would they like it?
I tried some young cuttings a couple of years ago, but they hated either the sun (late morning sun may have been too much?), the heat, or the humidity....

I figure if it was just too much sun, I can kick some out onto the balcony for the rest of the summer.

growing mainly orchids and gesneriads in an apartment in NoVa

Middle of, VA(Zone 7a)

Hmmm....good question...I have mine on the north/west side of the house under a ficus tree...but it's my first year trying these beauties. You might want to post your question in the Orchid Cactus Forum http://davesgarden.com/forums/f/episetc/all/ You might get more feedback there. Good luck!!

Baltimore, MD(Zone 7a)

Hey, Ki--and everyone,

I have a huge Ric-Rac cactus that I keep outside every Summer, pretty much in full sun and it has grown very full and with, obnoxiously, long "fronds". I think it is in the same family as Orchid cactus???? The "real" name of it is "Cryptocereus Anthonyanus".

This Summer, for the first time, it bloomed!!!! I guess it has reached the "miserably pot-bound" stage, so it bloomed. A lesson to those that always want to transplant things in bigger pots. Many plants prefer to be rootbound (AV's, Spath, Cactuses and succulents, Mums, etc.)

When a "frond" on this gets too anoyingly long, I cut it off and chop it into 4" pieces and root them all. I did so last Summer and I now have a batch that is rooted and ready to "go"--maybe 12 of them.

Offering this up to the "Home Folk" first. I refuse to go to the "Plant Exchange Forums!" It's name is G-R-E-E-D!!!

It takes many years for it to get this big. My "Momma" is about 12 years old and has only been transplanted ONCE! It is now in a 10" HB (see pictures below). The only problem is that it is very heavily one-sided. Not much I can do.......just hope the hangers can continue to support the weight.

Then--I always look at the "bright" side. Should it come crashing down one day, it will just give me more "fronds" (don't know what else to call them?) to cut up and root. EVERY piece and fragment of this has always rooted!

OK! Went out just now and took these pictures. Here's Momma hanging under my high deck roof--from the outside.

Thumbnail by Gitagal
Baltimore, MD(Zone 7a)

and here she is looking out fron under the roof.

Thumbnail by Gitagal
Baltimore, MD(Zone 7a)

Here is the tray of rooted cuttings. These are just from last year. Look and see the fat "original" pieces and see how much it has grown since I put them putside this Summer!

Send me a D-mail if you want one and include your address. Postage should be under $2.

Thumbnail by Gitagal
Baltimore, MD(Zone 7a)

Here's one of the blooms. First time it bloomed!

Thumbnail by Gitagal
Middle of, VA(Zone 7a)

You've got to be so excited!!! I've got a 6" one in a pot...guess I'll be waiting a bit for a bloom eh? They are a very nice color, for sure!!

Near Lake Erie, NW, PA(Zone 5a)

Thanks for sharing those pictures, Gitagal. That cactus could almost reach out and hug you. LOL

This message was edited Jun 28, 2006 9:30 AM

DC metro, VA(Zone 7b)

thanks for posting the photos! It looks huge !!! what a plant.

I guess I will try some of the epiphytic types outside this year.....

Alexandria, VA

I hope mine survived the trip from AZ. I was able to get a cutting to root and grow pretty successfully in the blast furnace out there, so I hope it will have survived a couple of weeks wrapped in a box...

Virginia Beach, VA(Zone 7a)

I was given a cutting from an Orchid Cactus so large, it had to wheeled in and out of the house on a cart. The last time I saw it, there were over 100 blooms.
I place my Orchid Cactus outside in the Summer, where it receives only the morning sun.
It has bloomed every Spring for the last 5 yrs.and has been breath taking.
Gitagal, your pic is wonderful.

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