The Poinsettia first came to the United States by way of Joel Roberts Poinsett, an American botanist, and the first United States Ambassador to Mexico. In 1825, he sent cuttings home to Charleston, South Carolina.
The brightly colored part on the Poinsettia that many people think of as the bloom is actually colored bracts. (modified leaves) The yellow flowers or cyathia, are in the center of the bracts.
Poinsettias have long had a bad rap for being poisonous. A study at Ohio State University showed that it would take practically an entire greenhouse of poinsettia leaves to cause those kind of effects. Plus the Poinsettia has an awful bitter taste that would discourage curious pets and children. The National Poison Center in Atlanta Georgia has given the plant the clear from the poisonous status as well.
Keeping your Poinsettia looking great all holiday season starts with keeping them away from cold drafty areas, maintaining at temperature not cooler than 65 degrees. Place in a brightly lit area and allow to dry slightly between watering. Avoid over watering, and drain any extra water off saucer so the roots won't rot. Use a balanced fertilizer every couple of weeks to feed the Poinsettia as it is actively growing. It's common for a few leaves to turn yellow and drop off when you first bring your plant home. No need to be alarmed...it is just adjusting to it's new living conditions.
A common question I hear every year is "how can I re bloom my Poinsettia plant?
This You-Tube video from Brookside Gardens has great step by step if you are considering giving it a try!
If you have any additional questions feel free to contact us we would be happy to assist. Let us help you select a perfect Christmas Poinsettia to desplay at home or for gift giving this holiday season!
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