Ask a Question
Notify Me On Question Update
Email this Question
My poinsetta is still lovely, how can I keep it that way?
Rate This FAQ
Even though the holidays are gone, your poinsettias don’t have to be. With a little care, they can still brighten up your home for months to come.
Poinsettias are native Mexican plants. They love the holiday season because they are shortday plants that require long nights to launch their color change. The colorful bracts of these plants are leaves, not flowers, with the most common bract color being red. The flower buds are the red or green buttons in the center of the bracts that open to a small yellow flower. Healthy poinsettias have dark green leaves below the bracts and foliage all the way to the base.
Consider these tips to keep your poinsettia healthy and bright.
* Poinsettias need a minimum of six hours of indirect sunlight each day.
* Protect the plants from freezing temperatures, especially when transporting them. Place them in a lightfilled room away from drafts. They do best in rooms between 55 and 65 degrees at night and 65 to 70 degrees during the day. Keep poinsettias away from drafty locations and avoid exposing them to temperatures below 50 degrees F.
* Water poinsettias when the soil is dry 2 to 3 inches down. The plants are very sensitive to overwatering and will develop root rot quickly if kept too wet. Water the pot thoroughly, letting excess water drain out of the bottom.
* Apply an allpurpose, watersoluble fertilizer once a week to keep plants healthy during the holidays. Once the colorful bracts drop off, reduce watering and fertilization to give the plants a rest period. Trim the poinsettia back so that just a few leaves are left.
* With proper care, poinsettia bracts can be maintained until about March or April. Once they begin to fall cut the plant back, leaving about six buds. For the first couple of weeks it will look like a stick. Water and fertilize as before, and by May it will start to leaf out again.
* To keep it small and compact, cut it back about mid-July and early September to stimulate branching.
* Beginning the first of October, put the plant in complete darkness as soon as the sun sets, allowing a minimum of 14 hours of darkness. A bag can be placed over the plant, or it can be set in a closet throughout the day. By the end of November, it will start to color and you will be able to enjoy it for another season.
* Poinsettias can be taken outdoors in the spring when the danger of a freeze is past. Place the plants in a shady location, and they can be enjoyed throughout the summer.
Submit Your Suggestion
Other Questions In This Topic
- How can I snake proof my home?
- Do you have a list of ingredient substitutions for cooking and baking?
- How can I protect my home from a wildfire?
- I'd like to make my own household cleaning products. Do you have tips?
- We are remodeling our kitchen, and would like to know what is the best kind of stove for canning. I have had to replace several heating elements on my current electric stove because of canning. I usually use a water bath canner, does a gas stove generate enough heat for canning?
- How can I control the large numbers of insects congregating on the exterior of my house?
- Do you have tips for organizing the garage?
- Box Elder bugs have emerged already and are breeding. They get into the house and crawl all over the west facing exterior house wallsand are all over the vegetable garden beds. How do I erradicate them?