Care of Poinsettia Plants
Poinsettia Plants: their care
Just like us, the Poinsettia plant likes to be warm.
Originating from Mexico and Central America this is hardly surprising. Fortunately, this is an indoor plant very much suited to our warm and central heated homes. However sometimes, before you buy a plant, it has already suffered a near-death experience!
But well grown locally produced Poinsettia plants have a strong and healthy root system. The plants will not have had to endure hours in a chilly dark truck crossing from a European grower! Plants bought from garage forecourts or draughty door-ways are to be avoided too. My advice is to shun any you see mistreated in this way and seek out a cosy warm garden centre, florist or nursery. Here the needs of these spectacular plants are understood.
Poinsettia plants in the home
They don’t need direct natural light for the festive season and so they are perfect centre of room plants. At all costs avoid draughty locations!
Correct watering needs a bit of thought too. Water when – and only when – the leaves start to droop. Give the whole pot a soak in lukewarm water until air bubbles stop coming to the surface. Then remove your plant and let surplus water drain away before putting it back into the cachepot cover.
I’d recommend adding a proprietary poinsettia plant feed to the water as that will stop those lower leaves turning yellow.
Poinsettia plant growing
Of course all poinsettias are specially treated during cultivation to grow more compact than they otherwise would. They have had the day-length shortened to entice the bracts to develop in time for Christmas. Left to their own devices, they would end up very ‘straggly’. A few coloured bracts might appear at Easter!
Knowing that poinsettias enjoy the warmth, why not display them in a novel warm way? Try replacing the normal pot cover with a knitted cosy. Drop the small sized ones into little cloth bags and hang them on a bare branch framework taken from the hedgerow or woods.
Of all the Christmas pot plants, poinsettias are still our favourite. Their showy red bracts set against green foliage are the two principle colours of the season. But now, there are other shades to choose from. Cream looks especially good with the red and appears to ‘lift’ the effect. Two tone and variegated bracts are a more acquired taste. I find that the most spectacular display will be when several of these colours are grouped together. Like many indoor plants they just seem to be happier in a group.
How do you display your poinsettia plants in the home?
You might like to read about another popular indoor plant at this time of the year- the Amaryllis – right here.
Watch this Youtube video for more tips on Poinsettia plants