Poinsettia Care for the Entire Christmas Season!

Tis the season to decorate the home with tinsel, trees, and poinsettias! But the hard part is that sometimes your poinsettia plant can be hit-or-miss as to if it will actually last until Christmas. But this doesn’t have to be the case! Follow these poinsettia care tips and your poinsettia will not only last the season, it’ll last all year!

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Poinsettia Care Tip #1: Purchase a healthy plant!

So this all makes sense to people. Of course no one is going to buy the sad, dying plant in the corner. But poinsettias sometimes don’t look sick until they all-of-a-sudden keel over dead! Basically, they’re really good at pretending they’re just fine until the very end… so here’s what you need to do to make sure that your plant is healthy BEFORE you put down the money…

Before you buy!

1. Choose plants that are away from the door

The closer these guys are to the store’s door, the colder they get… and let me say, these guys HATE the cold!!! (They originate in Mexico, so it’s no wonder!) If there is a strip of poinsettias being sold, choose one from the end that is furthest from any cold, drafty doors!

2. Look for healthy flowers

At the center of the poinsettia plant lies the actual flowers. This isn’t the bright red part. These are actually special bracts that this plant produces. (Amazing, right?!?!) Instead, look at the center of the colorful bracts. These flowers should be green or yellow, small, and look healthy. If these are brown or wilted, this can be a sign of cold damage, improper watering, or just overall lack of vitality. So to make sure you have the best plant possible, make sure that these flowers look healthy!

3. Check the soil

Sometimes these department stores have people take care of their poinsettia supply, even though they don’t know anything about plant care. This can cause plants to die shortly after they are purchased. So feel the soil! If it is super dry, or if it is super wet (you push on the soil and a puddle of water forms), then it isn’t in the best place. You can definitely remedy this, but I’d suggest you simply buy your plants somewhere else.

Follow these poinsettia care tips! First, check for healthy flowers to make sure you purchase a healthy poinsettia plant!

Poinsettia Care #2: In Transit

Once you purchas your poinsettia, make sure that it stays warm during your trip home. If you are out shopping with another person, have them pre-heat the car and pick you up at the front of the store. This way your poinsettia has the least amount of shock from the cold as possible.

Another way to protect your plant is to place an extra bag around the top of your plant and try to seal it at the base with your hands. This will trap a small amount of the warm store-temperature air around the poinsettia to give it just a touch more protection as you travel to your car.

Next, as you’d imagine, make sure that you don’t leave your plant in a cold car, and that you bring it indoors (into warmer temperatures) as soon as possible. This will help it to stay as healthy as possible!

Poinsettia Care #3: At Home

Now that you’ve chosen a healthy plant and you’ve painstakingly protected it from the cold, let’s talk about what to do with it at your home! To keep your poinsettia happy, place it in a location where it will start away from cold drafts and where it will possibly get a few hours on sunshine. If you only want it to last through the season then low light is fine, but if you want to keep it longer, make sure it gets a few hours of direct sunlight, or several hours of indirect sunlight each day. Just keep it away from hot, afternoon sunlight as this can scorch the plant’s leaves.

When watering, remember that less is more. Only water it when the top of the soil feels dry. This should be anywhere between once every couple of days (for light watering), or once a week (for large, thorough watering). Just keep feeling the soil each morning that first week to give yourself a good gauge for watering times. Also, make sure to remove the decorative wrapping when watering. This is because it will catch the excess water, causing your plant to get too much water and eventually rot and die. So yeah. Just take it off, let the pot drain into a sink or bathtub for a few minutes, then put it back in! Keep it pretty, but also healthy!

Follow these poinsettia care tips! Keep your poinsettia away from the cold, water lightly, and give it bright, indirect sunlight!

That’s all the poinsettia care instructions I’ve got for you today! For instructions on how to get your poinsettia to bloom for next year, follow these instructions!

Also, to make your holiday season more meaningful, join thousands of people around the globe in the daily December challenge, Light the World! I hope you all have a wonderful Christmas season!

Happy Digging!

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