The Orchid Cactus is also known as the Night Blooming Cactus which I posted about some four weeks ago (see this article). But then, it did not finish the bloom cycle. But two nights ago, it DID! And, I took pictures all through the night. This article includes a set of photos documenting the process.
UPDATE: The plant bloomed again (and again) just two weeks after this bloom. See the latest photos in our latest article on the plant here.
Epiphyllum oxypetalum (“Epi”)
Also known as Night-blooming cereus (although that is actually a DIFFERENT plant), Dutchman’s Pipe Cactus (from the shape of the stem at bloom time), queen of the night, Cactaceae, Night Blooming Cactus, and reina de la noche. This plant only blooms at night and usually only one time (sometime from June to September). The bloom opens after dark (around our 8-10pm) and is wilted in the morning (by 5am). If you get to see it, the bloom is beautiful.
Here is the bloom of the Orchid Cactus in the peak of its beauty! (It only lasts about 7-9 hours.)
The plant started looking like it was going to bloom several days earlier. Here is a gallery of photos starting about 4 1/2 days before the bloom and ending when the bloom has expired and has deflated.
The GotEpis.com site states that if a plant fails to bloom, it may be too healthy (“Oxypetalum blooms for survival, not pleasure. If the plant is very healthy it doesn’t feel threatened and won’t bloom.”) and to make it bloom, you have to “threaten” it.