We don't want this guide to merely tell you how to take care of Rhipsalis. We want to give you the information you need to maintain your plants, foresee problems, be able to work out solutions for any issues that may occur -- ultimately use these facts to solve any problem by simply taking care of your plant & reviewing this guide.
With that being said, we are still learning every day & will add all of our new findings to this running manual as they come.
Another component to this Rhipsalis guide are our TL;DR (Too Long; Didn't Read) areas. Skim for these blocked quotes for shorter summaries if you are looking for a quick read rather than an in-depth manual.
There's a saying,
"give a man a fish & you feed him for a day; teach a man to fish & you feed him for a lifetime."
LET'S BEGIN WITH THE TYPE OF SUCCULENT MOST ARE FAMILIAR WITH:
The basic definition of a succulent is a plant with foliage that carries thick, fleshy tissues which have the ability to hold water.
The "common succulent" is a desert plant that holds water in its foliage to maintain drought tolerance in a hot, dry climate where it receives little water & direct sunlight for the majority of the day. For this reason water storage is required to be able to make it through the sweltering heat.
To further exemplify what conditions a common succulent may require we are going to use the Peanut Cactus as an example.
This is a Peanut cactus. While Rhipsalis & the Peanut cactus are both succulents, they are unrelated in virtually every other way.
The Peanut cactus lives in desert like climates, which receive very seldom torrential downpours of rain followed by long periods of drought. For this reason, at home maintenance suggests you would water your cactus by saturating the soil (mimicking the torrential downpour of rain) & then let the soil dry out completely before watering again (further mimicking the long periods of drought that follow). Moreover, Peanut cacti live in areas where temperatures are particularly hot, but receive small bouts of shade every now & then. When illustrating these factors at home, you may place the cactus directly in a window where it will receive full sun most of the day, maybe even choosing to ignore the small bouts of shade as the temperature in your home would not increase to that of the natural desert climate.
& without further adieu,
Horticult's Guide to Rhipsalis
When you hear Rhipsalis is a succulent, it is not uncommon to assume that it falls into the familiar "desert succulent" category.
It is easily forgotten that Rhipsalis is classified
as a "jungle cactus" rather than that of the desert.
As you continue reading, you will notice the drastic differences between each climate & how the plants work with these disparities.
RHIPSALIS IS A JUNGLE CACTUS; A SUCCULENT BASED OUT OF THE RAINFOREST RATHER THAN THE DESERT.
As you can imagine, a jungle cactus & a desert cactus are built differently. They rely on different factors to survive, as each are exposed to exponentially different climates.
Posted to the right is a picture of a picture of Rhipsalis growing in its natural habitat.
The jungle cactus grows out of nooks in trees, underneath the forest's canopy where it thrives in shade.
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