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Plant Playground

The night blooming cereus

By David Silver

The night blooming Cerenus makes a great playground for pet birdsI would like to introduce you to a houseplant your smaller birds will enjoy as much as you. The night blooming Cereus (Epiphyllum oxypetalum), also called “The Queen of the Night,” makes an amazing plant playground for parrots. I have also introduced this plant to my friends as the “Houseplant for people who kill plants.”

A Late Bloomer
I was first introduced to night blooming Cereus when my friend Jane called me at midnight and said that I had to come over because her Cereus was in bloom. I really didn’t want to go out that late at night, but Jane convinced me that I had to see this plant because the blooms would only last the one night.

As soon as I stepped into her home, I immediately became aware of a pungent aroma. To me, the smell was sweet, yet earthy. The plant had taken over one corner of the living room, literally. It was climbing out of its pot. Large leaves intertwined with thin tendrils that went everywhere. There were more than a dozen blooms on the plant, each the size of dinner plates. The sight was truly worth a trip so late at night

**For the full article, pick up the September 2008 issue of BIRD TALK**

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