QUESTION: Can you root a piece of Christmas cactus in water? I was thinking of taking a piece from mine and making a new plant for a friend. – Tricia C
ANSWER: Some plants can be propagated by rooting a cutting in water, while other plants must have soil in order for their cuttings to develop roots. Christmas cactus cuttings can develop roots using either method, so the choice is really yours on how you go about getting your Christmas cactus cutting to develop roots. To root a piece of Christmas cactus in water, you will need a few cuttings from a healthy Christmas cactus, a glass jar, and some pebbles or stones.
First, take between one and four cuttings from a Christmas cactus, each around three to four inches long with around three or four leaves on each cutting. Then, fill the base of the jar with about two inches of stones or pebbles and add water so that the water line is even with the top of the stones or pebbles. Lastly, place your cuttings into the jar with the slightest tip of the cuttings touching the water. Most of the cutting should remain above the water and stones, while still being inside the jar.
The humidity in the jar will encourage the cutting to develop roots in just a short period. Just keep an eye on the water levels and make sure that the tip of the cuttings slightly dip into the water. If water levels evaporate, fill the jar back up to the appropriate level. Once you see roots form, it is okay to move the cuttings into soil.