Epiphytic Cacti

Epiphytes are plants that grow on another plant and take in their nutrients and water from the moisture in the air, rain or decaying matter accumulating around it. They use the host plant as a foundation or base most commonly for protection or to get more sunlight.   Epiphyllum Society of America registry Lists both Hybrids and Species. This page  along with sub-pages will provide information on Species.


Disocactus contains nearly all of the Day-flowering Hylocereeae with colored flowers. They may have shrubby, epiphytic or epilithic  with ribbed or flattened stems some are bristly or  smooth; Flowers are mostly funnel form or tubular, sometimes.  Blooms are almost always brightly colored.

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Shrubby, epiphytic or saxicolous. Stems  are segmented, cylindrical, angled, winged or flat.  Flowers are regular shape colors yellow, orange, pink or red.

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Scandent-pendent cacti distributed throughout most of Latin America. Stems are flat and  they usually  are nocturnal blooming.  Booms are white to yellowish funnel form. Some of the more common are E.hookeri,  E. oxypetalum and E. Thomasianum.

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Stems clambering, triangular, more or less spiny. Flowers are  nocturnal and usually large to very large  rarely small. Blooms normally have large overlapping scales , but  a few have small separated scales and occasionally minute spines.

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Stems cylindrical, ribbed, angled, winged or flat, Usually segmented, areoles often subtended by a rudimentary scale-leaf.

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Stems terete at base, flattened above, leaf-like, spineless.  Flowers are small, white or yellowish-white diurnal.

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Stems are 3 to 8 ribbed or are flattened. Blooms are usually solitary but sometimes 2 -3 per areole. There us not a lot of information available on this species.


Stems terete at the base, flattened above and leaf like spineless.  Blooms are small, white or yellowish-white.

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Rhipsalis (interesting video)

Stems are often pendulous, cylindrical, rigged, angled, winged or flat, usually segmented and spineless. Flowers mostly very small, whitish.

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Video of interest


Shrubby, epiphylic or saxicolous, Stems are segmented, flattened.  Flowers are regular or zygomorphic.  Commonly named Thanksgiving, Crab and Christmas Cactus are all in this family.

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Stems are long and scandent, mostly many-ribbed, rarely flat. Blooms vary from small to very large all nocturnal with funnel form, Tube harry and often spiny.  Bloom petals range from white to yellowish.

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These are climbing or clambering with adventitious root systems. Branches are flattened or 3-8 winged or ribbed and spiny. Blooms are nocturnal and white.

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Stems are terete and angled or flattened. Blooms are nocturnal funnel form with colors in pink, white to cream or greenish shades.

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