Houseplant of the week: fishbone cactus

Why will I love it?
Epiphyllum anguliger, more commonly known as the fishbone or zigzag cactus, is a fun, non-spiky plant that will add movement to your room – plus it’s non-toxic for pets and people.

Light or shade
Like all epiphytes it prefers the shade, with just a few hours of sunshine each day. In the late summer and early autumn, move it to a spot where it will receive a little full sun (but not during the peak afternoon heat) to encourage it to produce flowers.

Where should I put it?
Avoid windowsills that are in direct sunshine at any point of the day. Using a screw hook, hang it in a holder from the ceiling between 50cm and a metre away from a bright window, or put it on a bookshelf next to a window so it gets some bright indirect light.

How do I keep it alive?
Like all cacti, it requires free-draining soil to avoid root rot and to allow the soil to dry out completely between waterings. From April until September, water your fishbone cactus once a week, and use fertilizer; from October to March, don’t feed it and water only every four to six weeks.

Did you know…
It may produce fragrant white flowers in late summer, followed by an edible, gooseberry-like fruit.