Epiphyllum cacti are mostly epiphytic (they grow on other plants, but only use them as a support). They are often grown in hanging baskets to accommodate their long, pendent, leaf-like stems, but can be grown in containers.
They are hardy to about 10°C (50°F), but require at least 15°C (60°F) during the growing season, so are best grown in a heated greenhouse, conservatory or indoors.
Place the pots in bright, filtered light, with moderate to high humidity. To increase the humidity, position the pot on a tray filled with gravel and keep this topped up with water, but not enough so that the water reaches the surface.
Orchid cacti require sharply-drained growing media. Grow them in a standard cactus compost with added grit or perlite. Alternatively, mix three parts loam-based compost, such as John Innes No.2, with two parts grit or perlite and one part peat-free multipurpose compost.
- From mid-spring until late summer, water the plants when the compost begins to dry out, but do not let the plants stand in water
- Apply cactus fertiliser fortnightly
- To encourage blooming, move the plants in winter into a cooler place, about 11-14°C, (52-57°F) and keep the compost just moist until the flower buds form
- Once this has happened, increase the temperature and resume the normal watering regime