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Rhipsalis baccifera subsp. horrida


Common Name(s):
Synonym(s): Rhipsalis baccifera, Cassytha baccifera, Cactus pendulus, Rhipsalis pendula, Rhipsalis cassutha, Cactus fasciculatus, Rhipsalis fasciculata, Rhipsalis cassutha, Rhipsalis cassythoides, Rhipsalis dichotoma, Rhipsalis hookeriana, Rhipsalis undulata, Rhipsalis aethiopica, Rhipsalis horrida, Hariota horrida, Rhipsalis madagascariensis, Rhipsalis minutiflora, Rhipsalis pilosa, Rhipsalis comorensis, Rhipsalis suareziana, Rhipsalis zanzibarica, Rhipsalis caripensis, Rhipsalis cassutha, Rhipsalis cassythoides, Rhipsalis guineensis, Rhipsalis shaferi, Rhipsalis bartlettii, Rhipsalis heptagona, Rhipsalis cassuthopsis, Rhipsalis coralloides, Rhipsalis quellebambensis, Rhipsalis hylaea, Rhipsalis saxicola
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Subfamily: Cactoideae
Tribe: Rhipsalideae
Distribution: Madagascar : Seychelles : Mauritius : Reunion : Sri Lanka (Africa, Asia)
Habit: Cylindrical-Pendent
Flower: WhiteEncounterability: Common Worldwide
Species Notes: This is the only species in the cactus family that naturally occurs in the old world. All other species are restricted to the new world (Americas and surrounding islands). Although subspecies horrida occurs only in Madagascar the species is also found in Tropical America, Tropical Africa, Seychelles, Mauritius, Reunion, Sri Lanka.

Compare this species with Rhipsalis pilocarpa. Without flowers or fruit, these two plants appear identical at first glance. However, the two can be distinguished quite easily by looking at the branching habits. R. pilocarpa branches (and flowers) from the apex (ends) of the stems while R. baccifera branches (and flowers) all along the length of the stem sporadically. If the plant has flowers or fruit, the distinction is even more apparent. R. pilocarpa has flowers of 1/2 inch in diameter and similar sized red fruit with hairy tufts. In contrast, R. baccifera has tiny white flowers no wider than the stems themselves. These develop into pea-sized smooth white fruits.
Cultivation Notes: R. baccifera is an epiphytic cactus that prefers a more organic soil mix that does not get completely dry, but it should also not be perpetually in wet soil either. Watering should increase with higher temperatures. Ideal lighting would be full morning sun and afternoon shade. Hanging plastic pots are well-suited for this species.
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Rhipsalis baccifera
R. baccifera subsp. horrida
Picture taken at: Daiv Freeman's Private Collection

Photographer: Daiv Freeman
Rhipsalis baccifera
R. baccifera subsp. horrida
Picture taken at: Daiv Freeman's Private Collection

Photographer: Daiv Freeman
Rhipsalis baccifera
R. baccifera subsp. horrida
Picture taken at: Daiv Freeman's Private Collection

Photographer: Daiv Freeman
Rhipsalis baccifera
R. baccifera subsp. horrida
Picture taken at: Daiv Freeman's Private Collection

Photographer: Daiv Freeman

*Currently 36 of 36 known species are represented on CactiGuide.com.


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