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Cereus spiralis, Cereus forbesii spiralis, cereus spiralis, spiral cactus, twisted cereus cactus,

How to Grow Cereus forbesii ‘Spiralis’ – The Spiral Cactus, Twisted Cactus, Cereus Spiralis

Hi Guys, In this Blog I will be talking about the wacky and wonderful Cereus forbesii ‘Spiralis’ commonly called the Spiral Cactus and sharing info about how to care for and grow this unusual looking Cactus.

Cereus spiralis, Cereus forbesii spiralis, cereus spiralis, spiral cactus, twisted cereus cactus,
                                                                       Me with my Cereus forbesii ‘Spiralis’ Cactus

ABOUT:

Cereus forbesii ‘Spiralis’ Cactus is a fast growing columnar and then later branching cactus that over time forms into a ‘Candelabra effect’ from the base.

When young and grown from seed these cacti start off growing straight and then start to grow with a twist after 5 cm’s in height and can reach 13 feet high when mature.

Cereus forbesii ‘Spiralis’ originated from an original cactus in Brazil and around 1980 a few cuttings from this original cactus were taken and imported into Europe. Nearly all Cereus forbesii ‘Spiralis’ that are sold worldwide have been grown from seed or from cuttings.

This cactus is becoming more common in cultivation with many online and garden shops selling it.

Here is a special Video I have made for my You Tube Channel called Desert Plants of Avalon on How to Care for & Grow Cereus forbesii ‘spiralis’ Cactus, and you can watch this video below:

LIGHT REQUIREMENTS

Mature Cereus forbesii ‘spiralis’ like full sun, and a sunny position or window or greenhouse is ideal, but young plants like to have more shade until they are more mature.  If you are growing these Cacti behind glass though you will need to protect them from intense midday sun on very hot days in Summer, this is to prevent scorch or yellowing of the cactus skin, and a shade cloth or light net curtain can be used over glass to protect these cacti from the very hot midday sun in Summer. If you only have a north facing window that never receives any sun or growing indoors away from windows then LED Plant Grow lights especially made for plants can be used to replicate the natural full spectrum light and sunlight that these cacti need to grow and thrive.

SOIL

Cereus forbseii ‘Spiralis’ need a very well draining cactus and succulent soil that is free draining and dries out fast in between watering’s, you can use any good quality cactus soil that is ideally low in peat, but I like to make up my own Cactus soil of 3 equal parts of Loam, Grit and Horticultural sharp Sand, you can also use Pumice or Perlite or Lava Rock instead of Grit, the most important thing to remember is that the soil drains fast and dries out fast in between watering.

Here is a video I have made for my You Tube Channel called Desert Plants of Avalon on How to make Cactus Soil in 3 easy steps: 

WATERING

Spring and Summer water when the soil in the pot has dried out and reduce watering from late Summer, keep Cereus forbesii ‘Spiralis’ cacti dry with little to no water over the Winter months, If your cactus starts to look shrivelled over the Winter months then a light watering can be given as long as the temperature you are overwintering your Cactus is above 10 Celsius /50 Fahrenheit, as temperatures lower than this can cause rot. 

FERTILISING 

Feed Cereus forbesii ‘Spiralis’ Cacti twice a month in Spring and Summer with a good quality cactus and succulent fertiliser, you can also use a good quality Tomato feed used at half the recommended strength that they recommend for tomatoes, if you want to see what I like to use to fertilise my cacti and how I do it then check out this video I made for my You Tube Channel called Desert Plants of Avalon on How I fertilise my Cacti and you can watch this video below:

TEMPERATURE

These Cacti like a minimum Winter temperature of 50 Fahrenheit / 10 Celsius and they are not frost hardy at all. The ideal temperature during their growing season in Spring and Summer is around 60 – 80 Fahrenheit / 15 – 27 Celsius, its best to protect these cacti from excess heat above 85 Fahrenheit / 30 Celsius because stems can scar and scab and yellowing can occur unless plenty of ventilation can be given, open windows and use circulating fans in very hot sunny weather.

RE POTTING 

Re potting is best done in Spring and Summer and when the cactus has outgrown its pot. Cereus forbesii ‘Spiralis’ grow fast when they are given plenty of root space and you may need to re pot every one to two years. Once repotted its best to keep these cacti unwatered for a week to ten days to allow the roots to settle into the new soil and pot.

If you want to know How to repot a cereus forbesii spiralis cactus than check out this video I made for my You Tube Channel called Desert Plants of Avalon on Repotting a Cereus forbesii spiralis Cactus and you can watch this video below:

FLOWERING

Cereus forbesii ‘Spiralis’ will produce White and pink blooms in Summer with buds a deep purple colour, red fruits form if the flowers get pollinated.

If you want to know How to get your Cacti to flower, then check out this video I have made for my You Tube Channel called Desert Plants of Avalon on How to get your Cacti to Flower and you can watch this video below: 

PROPAGATION 

Cereus forbesii ‘Spiralis’ can be propagated by seeds or from cuttings taken in Spring or Summer, Cuttings must be allowed to fully callus over for a few days or weeks first before planting. These cacti grow tall and branch out over time and these branches can be pruned off and taken as cuttings. Seeds will germinate after 2-6 weeks. If you want to know How to Grow Cacti from Seed then check out a video I have made for my You Tube Channel called Desert Plants of Avalon on How to grow Cacti from Seed and you can watch this video below:

PESTS 

Mealy Bugs and Spider Mites, Thrips and Scale insect are the most common pests of all cacti, but Cereus forbesii ‘spiralis’ is very prone to Mealy Bugs and Scale insects, this is because these pests love to hide in between the twists on these cacti. Remove any pests that are visible with a q tip cotton bud dipped in rubbing alcohol / Isopropyl alcohol, and then once pests have been removed with the rubbing/isopropyl alcohol treat the whole cactus with a systematic insecticide spray or Horticultural Neem oil mixed with Horticultural soap.  Check out a video I have made for my You Tube Channel called Desert Plants of Avalon on How to use Neem oil on Cacti as a pest and disease treatment, and you can watch this video below:

I hope you enjoyed reading this post on How to Grow and Care for Cereus forbesii ‘Spiralis’ and for lots more tips and tricks on growing many different types of cacti & succulents then check out my You Tube Channel called Desert Plants of Avalon and you can follow me on Instagram, Twitter and facebook at @desertplantsofavalon

Happy Growing Guys,

lyn 😀 

 

 

 

Crassula muscosa, Crassula lycopodioides, Crassula pseudolycopodioides, Watch Chain Plant

How to Grow & Care for Crassula muscosa, aka The Watch Chain Plant – Crassula muscosa, Crassula lycopodioides, Crassula pseudolycopodioides

Hi Plant Lovers 😀

In this Blog / Article I will be talking about the very wonderful Crassula muscosa Succulent Plant aka Crassula muscosa, Crassula lycopodioides, Crassula pseudolycopodioides, and more commonly The Watch Chain Plant.

Crassula muscosa, Crassula lycopodioides, Crassula pseudolycopodioides, Watch Chain Plant
Crassula muscosa, Crassula lycopodioides, Crassula pseudolycopodioides, The Watch Chain Plant.

I have made a special video on my You Tube Channel called Desert Plants of Avalon on How to Care for and Grow Crassula muscosa and you can watch this video below: 

ABOUT:

Crassula muscosa grows in its natural habitats in South Africa in the Winter & Summer rainfall areas of the Western and Eastern Cape growing in well draining rocky quartz fields.

Crassula muscosa is a spreading growing Succulent Plant that can grow fast during the growing period, as the plant grows larger its common for stem segments to drop off and root readily where they land, and you can often see the stem segments that has dropped off growing in nearby plant pots or nearby places in your yard and garden.

Commonly called the Watch Chain Plant because of its tiny tight rosette leaf arrangements resembling the links of a jewellery chain and a watch chain, the word muscosa is Latin for ‘mossy’ due to this plants moss like appearance.

This plant is commonly sold and seen for sale as part of a plant and succulent bowl garden arrangement.

My Crassula muscosa plant ( pictured above) was also part of a plant arrangement that my friend gave to me over 12 years ago.

LIGHT:

Grows best in full sun or in very bright light, a sunny window or patio or other sunny and bright position is ideal, but if grown in intense midday sun in the Summer plenty of ventilation should be given, too little sun or too much intense sun without ventilation can cause leaf segments to go brown and hard and woody and they will drop off more readily, these plants grow well under full spectrum LED plant grow lights if you don’t have a sunny window or position to place them in.

SOIL:

Like all succulents these plants need a very well draining soil so that the soil can drain easily and does not stay too wet for long, a good quality commercial cactus & succulent soil can be used, or you can make up your own using 3 equal parts of Loam, grit (or perlite) and horticultural sand. If you want to know how to make your own soil for cacti and succulents then check the video below I have made for my You Tube Channel called Desert Plants of Avalon on How to make your own soil for cacti and succulents in 3 easy steps: 

WATER:

Spring and Summer and early Fall water every time the soil in the pot has dried out, in my experience these plants can take a lot more watering in Spring Summer and Fall, but ideally its best to allow the soil to dry in between waterings,

in late Fall and Winter its best to keep these plants more on the dry side and a good watering once a month is plenty, although this plant is Winter flowering it is not Winter growing and does not need to be watered as regularly, once a month is best, if you are growing these plants indoors on a sunny window and indoor house temperatures you may need to water them twice a month in Winter if they start to go limp or drop segments, but remember if in doubt its safer to under rather than over water.

FERTILISER:  

In Spring and Summer fertilise these plants once every 2-3 weeks with a good quality fertiliser especially for Cacti and Succulents, in Winter there is no need to fertilise even when these plants are in Winter flower, because although these plants are winter flowering they are not winter growing.

RE POTTING: 

Re pot in Spring and Summer or early Fall into a pot the next size up, plant into well draining cactus and succulent soil, after repotting its best to wait a few days before watering again to allow any roots to settle into the soil.

TEMPERATURE: 

In Spring and Summer a good temperature is around 70-75 Fahrenheit / 21-24 Celsius, they can take higher temperatures than this as long as long as plenty of ventilation can be given, open windows if growing on windowsills indoors on very hot summer days or install a circulating fan in hot greenhouses.

In Winter these plants can take very cold temperatures and is hardy to 20 Fahrenheit / -7 Celsius but ideally a temperature around 41 Fahrenheit / 5 Celsius is a safer minimum temperature for these plants in Winter.

HUMIDITY:

Like all succulent plants they don’t like high humidity as this can encourage fungus and rots, plenty of ventilation must always be given in very hot and wet weather, the ideal humidity for these plants is 50% or lower, but they can take much higher than this if the soil is allowed to dry out in between watering, and the soil is kept much drier in Winter.

FLOWERING: 

Crassula muscosa is a Winter flowering succulent, although it is not uncommon to see these plants flower in the Spring, Summer and Fall too.

Crassula muscosa, Crassula plants, Crassula muscosa flowers, Crassula muscosa, Crassula lycopodioides, Crassula pseudolycopodioides, Watch Chain Plant
Crassula muscosa, Crassula lycopodioides, Crassula pseudolycopodioides, Watch Chain Plant in flower.

The miniature flowers start off white and then turn brown as they age and are absolutely tiny, in fact most growers don’t even notice the extremely tiny blooms on these plants and the rather unusual strange scent of the blooms are often noticed before the flowers are seen.

The miniature blooms smell musty and soapy and the scent of these blooms is hard to compare to anything else, its a scent you either love or hate haha.

If you want to see what the blooms on Crassula muscosa look like up close then check out my video on my You Tube Channel called Desert Plants of Avalon of my Crassula muscosa in Bloom, you can watch this video below:

PRUNING:

Crassula muscosa is best pruned every year in Spring to help prevent the stems from growing unruly and pruning this plant back also helps to prevent the stems from dropping off from the weight of the stems as they grow.

These plants can be easily re started again as cuttings if the stems start to look too dry and brown.

PROPAGATION: 

These plants are very easy to propagate especially when pruning the stems in spring, cuttings root very readily in water, its always best to root cuttings in Spring and summer, just place the cuttings into a cup of about an inch of water and they will send out roots within 2-6 weeks, you can also plant the cuttings directly into well draining soil. 

I have made a video on my You Tube Channel called Desert Plants of Avalon on How to take cuttings and Propagate Crassula muscosa and you can watch this video below: 

PESTS & DISEASES:

The most common insect pests you are likely to see are mealy bugs, thrips, scale insect and the like, If I spot pests on my plants I like to use Horticultural Neem oil mixed with Horticultural soap and spray the plant/s thoroughly once a week for 6 weeks until no signs of the pests remain.

Fungus and root rot are the most common types of diseases on succulent plants although thankfully not that common on Crassula muscosa, root rot is best corrected by taking cuttings and re starting the plant, but if fungus is a problem its best to treat the whole plant with Horticultural Neem oil mixed with Horticultural soap and spray the whole plant thoroughly every week for a month.

I have made a video on my You Tube Channel called Desert Plants of Avalon on How to use Neem oil to treat insect pests and diseases on Succulent plants and you can watch this video below: 

I hope you enjoyed this article on how to grow Crassula muscosa, and for lots more tips and tricks on how to care for and grow Cacti and Succulents please check out my You Tube Channel called Desert Plants of Avalon.

Thank you for reading and have a wonderful plant powered day <3 

 

 

 

 

 

Parodia chrysacanthion Cactus flowers, cactus flowers, chrysacanthion 'Rubra Orange flame' Cactus,

Its been a BLOOMING lovely Summer for my Cactus Plants

Hi Guys 😀 

Here are some photos of my Cacti that have all been blooming lovely this Spring and Summer of 2020, its definitely been the best year ever for my cactus flowers, I have had many Cacti flower that I have had for many years that have flowered for me for the first time.

Some Cacti have to grow quite large until they will flower, such as the Cereus Cacti like Trichocereus and Pilocereus, but there are many of the smaller varieties of Cacti like the Mammillaria’s and the Rebutia’s and Echinopsis that will flower readily if given a nice sunny position and a cool and dry winter rest period.

If you want to know How to get your Cacti & Succulents to Flower you can watch a video I made for my You Tube Channel called Desert Plants of Avalon on How to get your Cacti & Succulents to Flower and you can watch this video below: 

Here are a selection of photos of some of my Cacti in bloom this Spring and Summer, I hope you enjoy the flowers.

Wishing you all a Blooming lovely day or evening, and please subscribe to my You Tube Channel called Desert Plants of Avalon for lots more videos on Cacti & Succulents.