August 2010 Rhipsalis baccifera subsp. horrida

A more in depth look at individual cactus species, a new one is added each month -managed by Hob
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August 2010 Rhipsalis baccifera subsp. horrida

Post by hob »

Rhipsalis baccifera subsp. horrida (Baker) Barthlott


Growth Habits: Branching stems 5 to 7mm dia tapering to a point.

Scientific name: Rhipsalis baccifera subsp. horrida.

Common names: Mistletoe Cactus, mousetail cactus.

Synonym: Rhipsalis horrida, Hatiora horrida

Etymology: Rhipsalis: From the Greek meaning wickerwork.
baccifera: from the Latin for bearing berries.
horrida:means frightening.

Origin: Madagascar (Africa)

Light: Ideal lighting would be full morning sun and afternoon shade.

Compost: An epiphytic cactus that prefers a more organic soil mix.

Water: Regular water keeping the soil moist but not soggy, dry in winter.

Flower: White very small 7mm

Min temp: Best kept frost free.

Cultivation: A good plant for a hanging pot as it is epiphytic, can be hung outside in a shady position in summer.


Comments. Subspecies horrida occurs only in Madagascar and is believed to be the only cactus originating from the "old world" current thinking is that the seeds were originally carried there by birds.
The common name Mistletoe Cactus comes from the long lived berries which resemble those of the Mistletoe plant.

Image showing flowers and berries

Close-up of flowers
large mature plant (Image and some text by Daiv Freeman)