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Christmas cactus is a true cactus although it doesn't resemble typical desert cacti. That's because in its native habitat it grows in trees. It is a short-day plant, blooming when it gets more than 12 to 14 hours of uninterrupted darkness. You can also force it into bloom by providing cool temperatures, below 55 degrees F, for 6 to 8 weeks. Plants grow best in bright light with moderately dry soil. Room temperature is good for it except when it is in bloom or developing flower buds. At those times keep it at 55 degrees F.