Cacti are amazing plants. They do not require special care, absorb electromagnetic radiation and bloom at the same time. One of the brightest representatives of this plant is the hymnocalycium cactus.
The origin of the hymnocalycium
The hymnocalycium cactus comes from South America. In the wild, it grows in picturesque groups, which consist of adult plants and "babies". Gymnocalycium can grow in lowlands and at an altitude of more than 3000 meters above sea level. The genus of these cacti includes about 100 species.
The plant has the shape of a ribbed ball with thorns. The older it is, the less spines become, and the ribbing of the trunk decreases, but does not disappear altogether. The flowers of the cactus are white or pink.
One of the types is Mikhanovich's hymnocalycium. This plant cannot be confused with others, as its trunk has a bright red, orange or yellow color due to the fact that it cannot produce chlorophyll on its own. Gymnokalycium Mikhanovich must be grafted onto the stem of another cactus. This species was artificially bred in Japan on the basis of a natural mutation that young plants were exposed to in 1940.
Caring for this plant is the same as for other cacti. It is best to put a pot with this flower on a windowsill on the south side. On too hot days, when the sun's rays heat up especially strongly, the cactus needs shading, as it can get burned. Gymnocalycium does not like drafts and stale air. In summer, it is better to expose it to the open air (porch, gazebo or balcony), and in other months to regularly ventilate the room in which this cactus is located.
The roots of the hymnocalycium are not too large, so a large pot is not needed for it. Moreover, in a large container, the cactus will not bloom. Gymnocalycium is afraid of acidic soil, so be careful not to acidify the soil in the pot. Young plants should be replanted every spring and adults as needed. You can buy soil for cacti in specialized stores, or you can make it yourself. To do this, mix in equal parts sand, peat, humus, turf and deciduous soil. Dishes for hymnocalycium must have drainage.
This plant is not often watered. Too wet soil will negatively affect the cactus, it will start to hurt and eventually die. In addition, excess moisture in the ground leads to the appearance of pests. In winter, the hymnocalycium should be watered no more than 1 time per month, in the fall, the frequency of watering can be increased up to 2 times, in the summer and spring, the plant is watered as needed.
The plant propagates by lateral shoots, which are abundant on the trunk of any adult plant. The shoot is carefully separated from the trunk and dried in a dry, dark place within 1-2 days. Then it can be immediately planted in the prepared soil. You need to take care of the "baby" in the same way as for an adult plant.
Not all hymnocalycium form processes. In this case, you can grow a cactus from seeds. The soil for sowing should be the same as for an adult plant, only softer. Seeds are sown on moist soil, after sowing, the container must be closed with a transparent lid so that the earth does not dry out. When the plants are 1 year old, they can be transplanted into a separate container. For the period of germination and maturation, the hymnocalycium must be provided with a temperature of 20 degrees and moderately moist soil by spraying.