Wednesday, November 16, 2011

Blooming


This Christmas cactus is the only houseplant I haven't managed to murder.

As soon as it's vaguely warm out, I take him to the patio and overlook him for three months. He is used to neglect as I don't do much for him during the rest of the year either. I guess the vagaries of Chicago's summer and my poor memory suit him to a T.

In October, after a good scrub, he resumes his place in the living room and blooms like mad. As soon as the blossoms fall off, he becomes depressed and goes all droopy until it's time to live outside again.

This sounds quite a bit like me, actually.

I divided this plant earlier this year. His twin, currently being neglected at our daughter's house, is blooming happily.

Have you had luck with houseplants? Have a favorite? Leave me a comment.

23 comments:

Johanna said...

I have a couple of these plants that I've kept alive for years. They never, ever bloom. Will sent Mom one several years ago. It gets watered about every 6 months. And it blooms! I give up!!! Apparently love is not important to these plants.

Anna JP said...

I want a houseplant to neglect! Can you divide it and give me one?

Naperville Now said...

Yes...but I think I have to wait until spring, if that is all right with you :)

mama t said...

Can I have one too??? :-0 It is beautiful! Just messing with you Naperville Now person.

ellen b. said...

Oh your cactus is very pretty! I'm afraid I kill indoor plants...
I've actually been to Naperville. Our daughter attended Wheaton for a few semesters and we'd stay in Naperville when we visited her...

EG Wow said...

Gotta love a plant that thrives on neglect!

Diane said...

I'm notorious for killing plants but I have managed to keep a ponytail palm alive for a long time now. It's been in my life for 17 years and is now taller than I am! I've re-potted it about 4 times, sure I was going to kill it every time but it just keeps on putting up with me! :)

Anonymous said...

When we lived in Jonesboro we had a sunroom full of plants. Once Kathy took an inventory of what I had and said: "Mom, every plant you have is for someone with a brown thumb!" I loved each one of them. : )

Cuzzin Carolyn

BFL said...

Light and temp are keys to Christmas cacti. We have one that is probably 30 years old and once again will bloom profusely.

But my real success story is an African violet, started by a friend. It now is three plants, in one pot, and even as I write this is brightening the kitchen with its deep purple blossoms. Makes me smile every time.

anitamombanita said...

well,he looks happy in the photo. Me and houseplants...hmmm... not so good. ;)

Sue said...

Any plant in my home is used to neglect. In fact, I think they could all be called "survivors."

I have managed to keep an orchid alive for years now. I'm not even sure how.

;)

JDaniel4's Mom said...

He looks very happy! What pretty blooms!

Emille said...

Ugh, I'm envious -mine is not blooming yet! I love the blooms of yours:)

Carolyne said...

Sue - My mom was a huge gardener. She had a big house plant that won several blue ribbons at garden club competitions. When Mark and I got married in 1982, she and my dad came for a visit and with them, came a transplant of her blue ribbon winner. I still have it, and at one point it was over 9 feet tall. I have split it a few times and passed on the "love". This plant only blooms maybe once a year and only when it is in it's ideal spot in the house. My mom died 18 years ago this month. Her plant manages every couple of years or so, in November, to give me a bloom. And as the kids say Nana is saying "hello".

Carolyne said...

Sue - my mom was a huge gardener. She had a large house plant that won several blue ribbons at garden club competitions. Shortly after Mark and I got married in 1982, she and my dad came for a visit, and with them came a transplant of the blue ribbon winner. I still have that plant. It reached over 9 feet tall and point. I have split it a few times to pass on the "love". This plant only a blooms once a year and not every year. It has to be in it's most comfortable spot in the house to bloom. My mom passed away 18 years this month. Every couple of years or so, we get a welcome bloom . . . . in November. The kids always say, Nana is stopping in to say Hello.

Karen S. said...

This plant is beautiful! I'll take a whole truck load! Naperville is a very cool town...do they still have that great spice store? An old friend of mine lives in Aurora and last time I came to visit we spent lots of time in Naperville...lovely charming town!

Wanda said...

I'm not good with plants either. These days I use our cats as my excuse since they would likely eat any plant in the house down to its roots. I did go through a plant period quite a long time ago, but it's a wonder those poor plants survived at all. I watered them whenever I vacuumed--sometimes that was a couple times a week, other times more like once a month!

Judie said...

I put all my former houseplants outside on the porch so they could be on the drip system. I always forgot to water them when they were inside.

Pondside said...

I have a four year old (or possibly older) Christmas Cactus that has never, ever bloomed. I am, clearly, not a good guardian of houseplants!

Beth said...

I just re-potted a plant I brought from our old house 22 yrs. ago. It too thrives on neglect and little attention. Thanks for reminding me, I haven't had a heart to heart with him for a long time.
Enjoy your beautiful blooms!

NellJean said...

My Christmas cactus has baby-teeth buds that are getting bigger every day. They are light sensitive and require short days to bloom.

Splendid Little Stars said...

I do love plants and have a few houseplants.
My daughter gave me a little snippet of a Christmas cactus a few years back. The little snippet has sat happily (one would presume since it didn't die) in its little pot of dirt. Nothing changing. just one little snippet. till recently. It now has grown a couple more what-do-you-call-them sections.

My newest indoor plant is a Meyer lemon. It has just bloomed and smells heavenly. I do hope it succeeds and has fruit!

Jenny said...

Christmas cactus always remind me of my grandmother. She didn't believe in houseplants except Christmas Cactus and African violets. To say she had a green thumb with those species is a total understatement!

The picture of your lovely plant brought back happy memories of her.

Thank you for that. And thank you for linking to Alphabe-Thursday's letter "C".

A+