Ultimate Guide – How To Grow And Care For Moon Cactus?

Moon cacti are low-maintenance houseplants that look fantastic on a desk or counter. Follow these easy techniques and you’ll soon have floriferous, long-lasting plants in your house

You cannot miss moon cacti because of their dazzling neon hues that appear in round-looking balls of yellow, bright pink or orange. They would normally be perched atop another green coloured cactus as it does not generate chlorophyll on its own. A moon cactus is generally a result of human design by grafting to make it two plants in one. As a result, you get two plants in one: the rootstock at the bottom and the genuine moon cactus at the top.

So, how do you cultivate a moon cactus? When starting from seed, it takes at least a year for the Moon Cacti to germinate. The most effective approach to cultivate moon cacti is to graft it onto a chlorophyll-producing green rootstock. Choose a cactus soil mix that is rich in organic matter, low pH and rapid drainage. Neither direct sunshine nor excessive water is good for these plants, therefore they should be planted in well-draining pots in a bright but not very humid location.

Moon cactus seedling growth and development

How To Grow And Care For Moon Cactus?

Generally, moon cacti are not excellent for propagation. However, you may simply learn how to graft them at home. Graft a moon cactus by cutting off the scion (the top section of the moon cactus) from the old rootstock using a sterile knife. You will detect around, vascular tissue on both the host cactus and the scion. Align their vascular tissues to bring them together.

Once the scion cactus and the bottom of the host container have been positioned, use rubber bands to secure them in place. Once the tissues heal up, you may remove the rubber bands. In certain rare circumstances, if you acquire a moon cactus that produces offsets, you may propagate it on maturity.

Offsets are significantly simpler to detach from the mother plant. Plant one offset in a cactus-friendly potting soil once it has dried for a few days. If you want to extend its life expectancy, you’ll eventually need to graft it onto a different cactus species.

There are situations when moon cacti need re-grafting. Under some circumstances, such as if the rootstock becomes mushy as a result of excessive watering, this may be essential. If this happens, you’ll need to re-graft the scion onto a new healthy rootstock using the steps outlined above.

This stated, most moon cactus bought online or at most gardening shops come equipped with instructions on how to graft if not already grafted. There is no need to panic if this is not the case since the majority of its care and maintenance requirements are quite similar to those of the other succulents.

Watering moon cactus

The moon cactus, like the majority of cacti, does not need much irrigation. The lower half of the host cactus is usually drought-adapted and will tolerate neglect for a period of time.

When it’s too hot for the moon cactus, it’ll need to be watered more often. In such a circumstance, you will need to pay great attention to the sort of soil in the issue. Moon cactus will not tolerate marshy sol, even for a day. In other words, before starting a new watering schedule, make sure the soil is absolutely dry.

In order to keep the cactus from being too wet, it’s preferable to use pots with drainage holes. Root rot, which may ultimately destroy the cactus, can occur if the plant is exposed to excessive amounts of water. Moon cacti watering is also affected by the size of the pot being utilized. If you have a little pot of moon cactus, you just need to water it once a week.

The time of year and location affect how often you should water moon cacti. During the warmer months, for instance, you may feel the need to increase the frequency of watering. This is particularly relevant if your cacti grow outside. Heat may be too much at this time, increasing evaporation. During the winter, you may lessen the frequency or stop entirely, but just ensure that you constantly maintain them misty.

Just like most of the succulents, moon cactus will flourish in regions with minimal humidity. If you want to keep your moon cactus happy, invest in a dehumidifier. Keeping it too high or too low might harm your moon cactus, so avoid these extremes.

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Potting and repotting moon cactus

The moon cactus will eventually need repotting since it is an indoor plant. It’s much more important if you’re growing the plant indoors. In order to ensure the plant’s long-term survival, this procedure may be smooth, but there are a few things to keep in mind. Here, we get further information about moon cactus.

Time

While moon cactus may be re-planted at any time, professional gardeners suggest springtime as the most appropriate for repotting your moon cactus. Because the moon cactus is actively growing and generating backup roots at this time, this is the best time to transplant. Since the cactus is so adaptable, moving it is likely to be a positive experience for it.

Frequency

Moon cacti have a tight root system. As such, it would be most optimal to repot them once every 3 to 4 years.

Type of Pot

Since the roots of moon cacti are so little, a huge container isn’t necessary. The moon cactus does well in a tiny container with a few holes in the bottom for water drainage. For optimum results, use unglazed shallow pots with drainage holes bottom to minimize water pooling at the root zone.

Soil Change

One of the major reasons for repotting a cactus is to alter the old soil that would, by now, be exhausted of the required nutrients. For moon cactus, you may choose to use a ready-made soil mix from the supermarket. Filling the new container with coarse sand and peat soil will work just as well. Repot the moon cactus into this moistened mixture. Keep in mind that the health and development of your moon cactus are directly linked to the kind of soil you use to plant it.

Preparation for Repotting

Repotting moon cactus takes preparation many days before the actual operation. This will require watering the cactus in its original container or location to ensure the roots stay wet. Once ready to relocate, carefully pull the plant from its old container, brush off excess soils, and gently insert it into the new pot. Fill the vacant gaps with the previously prepared fresh dirt. You will need to wait at least once a week before you start watering your moon cactus in the new pot. As a result, it will have more time to use the prior water, fertilizer, and other nutrients.

With appropriate repotting, your moon cactus should be good for at least 3 to 4 years. This is the perfect time to take care of your plants by watering, feeding, and trimming as needed.

Temperature and light exposure

Being a desert plant, moon cactus will grow at temperatures that you would expect in their natural home. They love a bright setting but should not be exposed to direct sunlight as this may severely impair the general development of the cactus. As a result, if the plant is being grown outside, it is advisable to keep it covered or in a shady location.

While moon cacti may withstand the winter wind, it is best to move it inside under such circumstances. If this is not feasible, you may try covering them with a piece of cloth or light blanket to assist screen them from the severe winter temperatures.

Moon cactus difficulties that you may encounter

Moon cactus may be a tough plant, but this does not make it immune to troubles, infections and other flaws. We’ll have a closer look at a few of them.

Short lifespan

As opposed to other indoor cacti, the moon plant does not have a lengthy lifespan. This has nothing to do with illnesses or severe environments but everything to do with its parasitic nature. Since the scion works like a parasite to the lower rootstock, the food generated by the rootstock is not enough to maintain both plants continuously. Over time, it fails to generate enough food, weakens from malnourishment, and finally dies.

However, the moon cactus also has to deal with a number of other major issues and illnesses. This is mainly produced by four key factors: water humidity, moisture and light. Moon cactus might have growth issues if you give it too little or too much of these nutrients. The following are a few of these issues:

Root rot

The moon cactus is prone to root rot. This is typically brought about by overwatering. Being a desert plant, moon cactus does not require too much irrigation, and when this occurs, root rot ensues. If you see any of these symptoms, your moon cactus is likely being overwatered:

  • The rootstock gets mushy or becomes brown
  • The soil stays moist even after neglecting irrigation for long
  • Black, brown, or mushy roots are all possible outcomes of root rot.
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Remedies of root rot

Salvaging moon cactus suffering from root rot relies on the state and degree of the rot. Re-grafting the scion to a fresh rootstock may be necessary if the afflicted rootstock is already mushy. The white, healthy roots may be left in place if the scion is otherwise healthy and the mushy or black roots are the only ones that are afflicted. After a few of weeks, you may repot the plant in well-draining soil and begin watering it again.

Sudden colour change

Moon cactus is recognized for its brilliant hues. However, an abrupt shift in its natural colour pigmentation may be an indication of danger. Usually, the plant may become yellow with white or black markings. This is frequently a consequence of too much light or exposure to direct sunlight.

Salvaging this scenario relies on the level of the damage, while some may merely demand change of environment others may call for total re-grafting for better outcomes.

Feeding the Moon Cactus with a fertilizer

Fertilizing Moon Cactus

Even while the Moon Cactus is well-suited to the desert’s limited supply of nutrients, this does not imply that it is immune to fertilizer requirements. Fertilizing moon cactus helps it adapt much better to residential surroundings. It also flourishes better, and its hues blossom more brilliantly with the correct fertilizer.

For optimal results, use one gallon of water with ¼ teaspoon of 15-15-15 water-soluble fertilizer for moon cactus. During the spring and summer, this should be done on a weekly basis. Apply fertilizer by changing one of your irrigation schedules. Do this by administering precisely the same quantity of solution as you would while watering the plant. During winter, moon cactus won’t require much fertilizer and thus once a month will suffice.

For the monthly fertilizer or feeding, you may try flushing the soil entirely to replenish the plant nutrients inside. To do this, properly water your cactus. Ideally, you will need to use four times the water volume capacity of the pot. After all the water drains entirely, you may next apply your cactus fertilizer. Apart from enhancing nutrient absorption, soil washing helps avoid the build-up of mineral salts that impede development. Avoid over-fertilizing the cactus to avoid damaging or even killing it.

Pests

Despite its tough exterior, mealybug infestations do occur on moon cactus. If not addressed in time, these white, furious bugs may slowly destroy the plant. Luckily, you may quickly get rid of these pests by brushing them off with a Q-tip. You may then spray it with a combination of water and half rubbing alcohol. Since they keep returning, this should be done on a regular basis for some time. In circumstances when chosen plants have been affected, you may try segregating them from healthy plants.

Pruning

Moon cactus doesn’t need much trimming due to its modest size and moderate development. However, in circumstances when it is overgrown, you may try pruning down any excessive or damaged leaves. This is normally done immediately after the cactus completes blooming. Cut from the main stem by following the leaves with clean, sharp pruning scissors. Dispose of the plant tissue correctly and let the cactus free to flower once more.

What You Should Know Before Growing Moon Cactus

Apart from its distinct colour pigmentations, moon cactus shows several other noteworthy properties. The colourful half, hereafter referred to as the scion is generally the primary plant while the lower part might be any type of cacti that works as the rootstock. While numerous kinds of cacti may be used as the rootstock, the Hylocereus cactus is commonly selected since it roots quickly and grows rapidly.

Moon cacti’s colourful section is sometimes confused with the plant’s blooms, however, this isn’t always the case. When the moon cactus does produce flowers, the blooms are a beautiful shade of pink. Flowers would normally sprout from the top coloured scion and not from the green rootstock. This occurs typically in late spring or early summer. Seeds can also be obtained if the circumstances are appropriate and the cactus flourishes as predicted

Moon Cactus is well recognized and highly prized of all cacti. Because of its stunning beauty, ease of growth, and high yield, the growing moon cactus is a popular gardening talent.

Here is all you need to know about growing moon cactus. This succulent plant has a unique colour and form that makes it stand out. Aside from its gorgeous beauty and ease of growing, its moon-like form also makes it a favourite choice among gardeners.

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Moon cactus may grow to different heights. The rootstock will determine this, but on average, a cactus will cease growing after around 4 inches of growth. It may grow up to a diameter of two inches at its widest point. Even with such magnitude, its sticks out with its fascinating development patterns. There are 8 to 14 ribs on the plant, and the margins are slender and somewhat notched. The thorns, which are weak and flexible, are greying yellow and somewhat curled.

Many cacti kinds may be cultivated with the moon cactus, but Schlumbergera, often known as Christmas, Thanksgiving, or Easter cactus, is the greatest match. Both kinds of cacti need the same kinds of circumstances to grow well. It requires enough light but should not be direct. When cultivated inside, you may try putting it in an east or west-facing window. Some obvious indicators of too much light include a bleached white colour or scars appearing on the ribs. In other circumstances, the entire plant may abruptly become yellow.

It is impossible for moon cacti to live at temperatures lower than 9 degrees Celsius. However, it requires somewhat humid circumstances. As such, they are easy-going in terms of their moisture requirements. Always make sure the soil is totally dry before pouring any extra moisture. Additionally, you may try spraying the top of the cactus to maintain their pink, orange, red and yellow hues even more bright. Misting is a great way to keep plants wet without having to keep adding additional water to the soil.

Moon cacti cultivation doesn’t have to be difficult. However, you will need to bear in mind that you are caring for two plants in one. There are times when it is necessary to treat the rootstock differently from the main moon cactus. As such, you require great attention to ensure that you strike a balance for a healthier interaction between the two. Your home’s multicoloured mutant cactus may stay in its attractive state for much longer with these additions.

Is moon cactus good for home?

Yes is the basic answer. Cacti and other houseplants provide us with a wide range of health benefits. These succulents are also relatively simple to grow and maintain. Indoor cacti can increase your productivity, improve your breathing, and make you happier.

Why is my moon cactus squishy?

The browning of the stem of your moon cactus might potentially be due to bacterial or fungal diseases. In general, if the brown section of the stem is soft and mushy and covers the majority of the stem, your plant is likely doomed. It’s better to toss it out and start again with a fresh, healthy plant.

Summary

Graft a moon cactus to graft it onto a chlorophyll-producing green rootstock. When starting from seed, it takes at least a year for the Moon Cacti to germinate. The most effective approach to cultivate moon cacti is to graft them onto a cactus soil rich in organic matter and low pH. There are situations when moon cacti need re-grafting. When it’s too hot for the moon cactus, it’ll need to be watered more often. Root rot can occur if the cactus is exposed to excessive amounts of water.

If you have a little pot, you just need to water it once a week. Moon cacti have a tight root system. While a desert plant, moon cacti will grow at temperatures that you would expect in their natural home. They love a bright setting but should not be exposed to direct sunlight as this may severely impair the general development of the cactus. The moon cactus also has to deal with a number of other major issues and illnesses.

This is mainly produced by water humidity, moisture and light. Salvaging moon cactus suffering from root rot relies on the state and degree of the rot. Re-grafting the scion to a fresh rootstock may be necessary if the afflicted rootstock is already mushy. For optimal results, use one gallon of water with ¼ teaspoon of 15-15-15 water-soluble fertilizer during the spring and summer, this should be done on a weekly basis. Moon cacti’s colourful section is sometimes confused with the plant’s blooms, however, this isn’t always the case.

The Hylocereus cactus is commonly selected since it roots quickly and grows rapidly. Many cacti kinds may be cultivated with the moon cactus, but Schlumbergera is the greatest match. There are 8 to 14 ribs on the plant, and the margins are slender and somewhat notched. The thorns, which are weak and flexible, are greying yellow and somewhat curled. Moon cacti cultivation doesn’t have to be difficult.

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