Etymology -The generic name is taken from the Greek lepis, meaning a scale, and refers to the small scales set beneath the areole.Lepismium species are either Epiphytic or Lithophytic -meaning tree-dwellers or rock dwellers. They typically grow as hanging masses of many-branched stems that branch off from the middle of the stems (Mesotonic). The stems vary from flat, to angled, to rounded in cross-section. Flowers arise along the sides of the stems and often line the entire length of the stem on both sides. The flowers themselves are relatively small, though generally larger than those in the similar genus Rhipsalis. Several Lepismium species feature colored flowers and other have white flowers, either of these turning into bright colored fruits later on.
These species largely occur in Bolivia, but are also found in adjacent Brazil and Argentina. Some species are quite common in cultivation while others are virtually unknown to growers. Like other epi-cacti, this species requires wetter, more tropical conditions than their desert counterparts.
Four genera appear on CactiGuide.com by default under and including the genus, Lepismium. Acanthorhipsalis, Lymanbensonia, and Pfeiffera are those included, but The New Cactus Lexicon reaffirms the genus Pfeiffera with 9 species.