Rebutia Pink Sensation

Rebutia ‘Pink Sensation’ Care & Propagation

Rebutia Pink Sensation is a small growing cactus cultivar prized for its hot pink blooms.

While Rebutia is an easy plant to grow there are a few things to know about this succulent to grow it successfully. The information below is based on growing hundreds of these cacti at our nursery Fern Farm Plants.

Description

Rebutia Pink Sensation is a cylindrical cactus growing to approximately 4cm across and 3-4cm tall. It has a clumping habit with offsets forming at the base creating tight clusters to about 15cm.

Rebutia are native South America, in particular mountainous regions of Bolivia and Argentina.

Rebutia Pink Sensation

The globular heads are green in colour with golden- brown spines which grow close to the surface, almost hugging the head. The spines are not very hard either. Thanks to this Rebutia Pink Sensation does not feel very prickly and can easily be handled without wearing gloves, though care should be taken not to squeeze it too much.

In spring pink buds form on heads that are more mature. The flowers open up during the day and close for the night. Each flower only lasts a few days, but in older, bigger plants blooming can last for well over two weeks as new buds open. Larger the plant, more buds will form.

The flowers are, as the name suggests, shades of pink with a yellow centre (pistil and stamen). If the flowers are pollinated seed pods will form.

Position & Care

Rebutia Pink Sensation is a hardy cactus that will grow in a variety of conditions. Although mild frosts should not kill this plant, it prefers warmer, frost-free winters.

Outdoors Rebutia will grow in sun as well as bright shade. Plants in sun will flower more prolifically and, in general, grow better. During heatwaves pot plants will be better off in a shaded area as strong UV can burn the surface and even kill young plants.

Pink Sensation will also grow indoors, however, the spot has got to be exceptionally bright otherwise the heads will lose their globular form and flowers will not form. As with most plants, even this hardy cactus will not grow indoors as well as it will outdoors.

Although Rebutia Pink Sensation can survive long periods of drought, it will respond to regular watering by growing bigger and faster. In the garden watering can be left to the rain (unless it hasn’t rained for a couple of weeks) while in pots it is recommended to water thoroughly when the potting mix has dried up.

Rain is unlikely to rot this cactus as long as the potting mix well draining. Our nursery Rebutia grow outdoors all year round, even during rainy spells.

If grown in pots, regular upgrade to a bigger pot every growing season will stimulate growth and flowering. Rebutia will grow in smaller pots for a long time, but once rootbound, it will slow down and produce less pups and fewer buds come flowering season.

Succulent potting mix should be used for pot plants. In the garden Pink Sensation will grow in garden soil, though a bit of potting mix worked through will help the roots establish better.

Propagation       

Rebutia Pink Sensation can be propagated by offsets and seed. Offset propagation is much quicker and easier as this cultivar produces them quite freely.

Rebutia can produce upwards of 10 offsets every season. To separate offsets, simply pull them off the main plant and repot in a new setting (garden or a pot). It is likely that the offset will have roots of its own already.

Growing Rebutia Pink Sensation from seed is possible but may prove difficult. One, it can be hard to find a reliable seed seller that will actually sell you seed that has not been contaminated with other pollen of other cacti/ sell seeds that are viable. Two, germination of the seeds can also be unreliable and three, it can take a very long time (years) for a seed to grow to a decent sized plant. Cactus seed is incredibly small and can easily blow or wash away if not careful.

Whichever propagation method is used, Rebutia Pink Sensation should only be propagated in the growing season. This would be spring, summer and beginning of autumn in mild climates, though do be careful young plants do not get burned in strong summer sun and always provide bright shade for freshly propagated offsets.

Pests

Rebutia Pink Sensation does not attract many pests. Mealy bugs can burrow themselves in the tight clusters and snails/slugs sometimes take a chunk, but overall, we have rarely seen any the Pink Sensations plants grown at our nursery.

For a list of animals that like to eat succulents, you can read another one of our articles here. We also have a separate, in-depth article about mealy bugs.

Toxicity

Although we could not find any toxic effects reported, it is advisable to not consume Rebutia Pink Sensation. The spines should be a big enough deterrent but if it is ingested by accident a healthcare professional should be consulted.

Where can I get it?

Rebutia Pink Sensation should be easy enough to source from online nurseries. Specialist succulent nurseries may also stock this plant.

Our nursery sells small Rebutia Pink Sensation online in Australia.