Unusual cactus hymnocalicium: species, reproduction and care at home

Gymnocalycium belongs to the Cactus family. In vivo, it grows in southern Brazil and Argentina. There are many types and varieties of flower, but only a few of them are suitable for growing at home. Cactus is popular not only because of its attractive appearance, but also because of its unpretentiousness in care. In addition, it is able to bloom even in an unfavorable time.

Species and varieties

Gymnocalycium is a perennial plant with a rounded stem and dense roots that go deep into the soil. There are over 80 varieties of cactus, but only 15 of them are suitable for growing at home.

The following species and varieties are most popular with flower growers:

  • Gimnokalitsium Mikhanovich.

This species is one of the most common. The cactus stands out for its large flowers of raspberry or salad pink shade, which are formed in the upper part of the stem.

  • Brazil Mix .

This miniature cactus, reaching a height of no more than 15 cm, is a type of Mikhanovich's hymnocalicium. The flowers of the plant are saturated red, yellow and orange.

  • Gymnocalycium balda, or Baldianum.

This spherical cactus with a gray-green stem in diameter is no more than 9 cm. During flowering, he has numerous flowers of white, pink or dark red color.

  • Friedrich Gymnocalycium.

Cacti of this species are distinguished by the fact that they have the least chlorophyll. The flowers they have are painted in lilac or brownish red.

  • Gymnocalycium Japanese.

These plants are a hybrid species of the Friedrich hymnocalicium and were obtained by crossing mutating cacti.

  • Gymnocalycium saglionis, or Salon.

This variety differs from others in long flowering, which begins in spring and continues until mid-autumn. During this period, pink, yellow or red flowers appear in the upper part of the cactus.

  • Gymnocalycium Salio.

This species is one of the largest, as it grows up to 30 cm. Salos are distinguished by a spherical stem and long curved spines, which are considered decorative.


To plant a cactus, you need to purchase a small pot made of plastic or ceramic. It should have holes for drainage. Large containers for hymnocalycium are not suitable, since the plant needs to feel the root system of the pot wall.

The soil can be prepared independently by combining the following components:

  • 3 parts of sheet land and sand;
  • 2 parts of soddy soil and peat;
  • 1 part chopped charcoal.

The soil for the hymnocalicium must be neutral or slightly alkaline, since the acidic soil of the cactus does not tolerate.

Ready-made primers for cacti can be purchased at the flower shop. Before planting, it is necessary to lay a layer of drainage on the bottom of the pot and only after that fill the soil.

Containment conditions: season table

Gymnocalycium belongs to unpretentious plants, but even for it you need to create minimal conditions that vary depending on the time of year.

SeasonTemperature modeLightingAccommodation
Spring and summerOptimum temperature - + 20 ... 30 ° CA cactus needs a lot of light, but it must be shaded from the sun to prevent burns.It is advisable to take the pot out onto the terrace or balcony on warm days.
FallIt is advisable that the thermometer does not fall below + 20 ° CDuring this period, the plant can not shadeSouth windowsill
WinterThe temperature in the room should be between + 9 ... 15 ° C. The minimum temperature in this period is -8 ° C (you can’t keep the cactus in such conditions for a long time)Additional artificial lighting should be provided.Move the cactus to a cool and dry place (insulated loggia). If the frosts are severe, then you need to bring the pot into the room, but put away from heating appliances

To humidity, the hymnocalycium is completely undemanding. The plant tolerates dry air well and does not need spraying. At home, the cactus must be protected from drafts, which negatively affect its growth.

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Caring for the hymnocalycium at room conditions consists in the following procedures:

  • proper watering;
  • timely transplantation;
  • fertilizer application.

Pruning is required only for rotting and chlorophyll-free cacti, which must be grafted onto the column-shaped stem of other hymnocalyciums.

Watering and feeding

Watering should be scarce. It is necessary to moisten the soil as its top layer dries. By autumn, the frequency of watering should be further reduced. In the winter, it is enough 1-2 times for the entire season to moisten the soil.

Water for irrigation of the cactus should be filtered and warm. It is advisable to slightly acidify with lemon juice.

It is recommended to feed the hymnocalicium no more often than once a month. As fertilizer, it is necessary to use mixtures with a low nitrogen content for cacti and succulents. In this case, the concentration of fertilizing should be half that which is indicated in the instructions. In winter and autumn, fertilizing the plant is not required.


The procedure for pruning a cactus is called grafting. During it, the top of a sick hymnocalycium is cut off and inoculated to a healthy succulent. At the same time, the part of the plant that should be grafted is called a graft, and the cactus used for grafting is called a stock.

During the procedure you will need:

  1. Take a sharp knife and sanitize it.
  2. Make cuts on the stock and scion and connect them.
  3. Fix the cactus in this position with a bandage.
  4. Remove it after the plants grow together (after about 5-7 days).


The hymnocalicium does not need frequent transplants. Adult specimens are recommended to be transplanted no more than once every two years. It is advisable to carry out the procedure in the spring. The new pot should be 2 cm in diameter larger than the previous one.

The transplant is carried out as follows:

  1. The cactus is removed from the pot and cleaned of old soil.
  2. The plant is washed in hot water and dried for 2 days.
  3. The hymnocalicium is transplanted into a new container with a drainage layer.
  4. The pot is filled with a substrate for cacti.

After transplanting, the hymnocalicium is not recommended for watering for a week.

Breeding methods

A flower can be propagated in two ways:

  • by seeds;
  • lateral layering.

The first method is used most often. Chlorophyll-free species are propagated by vaccination. But if during pruning a diseased plant is grafted to a healthy specimen, then for propagation both the scion and the stock should be in good condition. The rest of the procedure is carried out similarly to pruning.

Sowing seeds

Sowing seeds can be carried out at any time of the year. First you need to prepare a small shallow pot and a fine-grained substrate. It is recommended that you first calcine the soil in the oven to disinfect it. Then you need to fill the soil in the selected pot and moisten it.

Reproduction by seeds is carried out as follows:

  1. Sow seeds on top of the soil.
  2. Cover them with a film or a plastic bag.
  3. Spray periodic soil from a spray bottle or water the plantings through a sump.

In the room it is necessary to create favorable conditions for seed germination, namely, to maintain the temperature within + 18 ... 20 ° C and to provide the plantings with sufficient lighting. Seedlings grown from seeds grow quickly, and after a year they should be transplanted into pots.

Using Side Layers

Lateral processes

Side layers are called kids. They must be torn from the mother's cactus by turning slightly. Children separate easily, since they almost do not have their own root system. Sometimes there are roots in the layers that are intertwined with the main rhizome, and in this case, the roots of the children should be carefully excavated. Then they act according to the following scheme:

  1. Dry the separated processes for two days.
  2. Fill the pots with a substrate and moisten it.
  3. Put the kids in prepared containers.

The shoots take root quickly enough. You need to take care of them in the same way as for an adult hymnocalycium.

Growing problems

Problems in growing hymnalicium in room conditions arise when the plant is improperly taken care of. Most often, flower growers face the following troubles:

ProblemCauses of occurrenceWays to rectify the situation
Growth slowdown
  • Watering with hard water;
  • inappropriate land
Transplant the cactus into a slightly alkaline soil and water it only with filtered water at room temperature
Lack of floweringUnsuitable winter conditionsIn order for the hymnocalycium to bloom next year, it is necessary to move it in a cool and dry room in winter
Dropping buds
  • Sharp temperature changes;
  • lack of lighting
The cactus needs to be protected from drafts and provide it with additional lighting.
The appearance of spots at the base of the trunkExcessive wateringWater the cactus only when the topsoil is dry

If the base of the cactus has darkened, but remains dry and hard to the touch, then this phenomenon indicates the beginning of the sampling process. In this case, no special measures should be taken.

Diseases and Pests

As a rule, pests live in the soil or move to a cactus from other indoor plants. Most often, the following parasites attack the hymnocalicium:

PestSigns of infectionHow to fix the problemPhoto manifestations on the example of cacti
Flat red tickThe appearance of small dry rust spotsIf the house has no more than 2 cacti, then each affected plant should be washed with hot water and a cotton swab moistened with ethyl alcohol. If the collection of hymnocalyciums is large, then the sick succulent must be treated with acaricides (Actellik, Fitoverm)

  • Growth retardation;
  • lack of flowering;
  • the appearance of white plaque
Remove the hymnocalycium from the pot and hold it for 15 minutes under hot running water. If white plaque formed on the stems, then you need to wash the whole plant, and not just the root system. If hot baths do not help, then the cactus should be sprayed weekly with an insecticide (Aktara)

ShieldThe formation of small brownish tuberclesRemove the scab with a damp cloth. Then it is advisable to treat the cactus with an insecticidal preparation

As for diseases, most often the hymnocalycium suffers from rot of the root system, which occurs with excessive watering. Signs of this disease are stunted growth and lack of flowering. The problem is solved as follows:

  1. Injured roots are trimmed with a sterile instrument (knife, scissors).
  2. The root system is washed with hot water.
  3. Roots are processed by crushed coal or ash.
  4. The gymnocalycium is dried and transplanted into a pot filled with a moistened substrate.

With proper care, the hymnocalycium will delight the florist with its flowering and will be an excellent decoration for any interior. Growing a plant does not require special skills and even a beginner can easily cope with this.


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