By Merilyn Cranford, Somervell County Master Gardener
About 4 or 5 years ago, my sister-in-law (a Tennessee Master Gardner) asked me if I had ever grown a night-blooming cereus. Not knowing just what she was talking about, we went out to her garden and she cut off a leaf of her existing plant. It was one of the ugliest plants I had ever seen, but I acted like she had given me a family treasure. However, she patiently explained that the plant blooms only at night or in the early, early morning.
So I went home and gave this newest addition to our home a lot of TLC. Well, to my surprise, the thing didn’t bloom right away, but much later…two years later!! I couldn’t believe this prize possession was finally going to bloom. So we watched as the first bud appeared, and every morning thereafter we patiently checked its progress. The occasion held us in suspense, and after around 8 to 10 days after making our regular check in the morning…..there it was in all its glory. What a beauty!!
As the pictures show, the bloom was sparkling white and nearly as large as my husbands hand. It was truly a blessing worth waiting for. Hope the pictures spark some interest to others who might want to try growing one. Enjoy!!
Night-Blooming Cereus or Epiphyllum oxypetalumis a species of cactus and one of the most cultivated species in the genus.