Epiphyllum Anguliger, a Jungle Cactus

July 08, 2016


Photographer: Menashe Davidson
Summary Authors: Menashe Davidson; Jim Foster

Epiphyllum anguliger is an epiphytic cactus, indigenous to temperate, evergreen oak area in Mexico. Though it's a cactus, it thrives in humid conditions and shade. Its colorful leaves and fragrant flowers, which bloom overnight, make it a popular ornamental --  grown in gardens and as a house plant. It's commonly known as the fishbone cactus because of its deeply-toothed, flattened stem. However, because of its nighttime flowering, it's also called Queen of the Night. The flowers bloom as soon as it begins to get dark (upper left photo). Note the progression of the featured bud's opening over a 17-hour period starting at sunset -- follow photos in a clockwise direction. Flowers of jungle cacti are pollinated by nocturnal insects. Photo taken from my apartment garden in Rishon Lezion, Israel, on April 28 and 29, 2016.