Pick Your Community: | Hopkins | Muhlenberg | Daviess | Christian | Henderson | Lakes | McCracken | Webster

The Basics of Poinsettia Plant Care

poinsettiaUS (12/15/13) — Although poinsettias are most often associated with the holiday season, they are actually tropical plants. In spite of their origins, poinsettias can thrive during the holiday season and even last long after the holidays have come and gone.

Poinsettias are native to Mexico and Central America. Aztecs called the plant cuetlaxochitl. The flowering plant was first introduced to the United States by Joel Poinsett, the U.S. ambassador to Mexico, and was subsequently renamed the poinsettia. The flowers of the poinsettia are actually the yellow blooms at the middle of the bright red or white bracts that form on the plant. Perhaps due to the bright red of the bracts, the plant quickly became a popular Christmas plant.

It's important to note that poinsettias grow in a warm climate and therefore must be kept in tropical conditions to ensure the plant's health. Furthermore, poinsettias bloom in response to shortening daylight hours. That means they will need ample darkness each night in order to simulate the dark nights of short, winter days. To achieve this, you may need to put the plant into a dark closet for 12 to 14 hours each night.

During the day, the plant should be in a sunny window where it will have access to bright light. The more light the better. Keep the soil evenly moist. Misting the plant will help it to retain some humidity. Also, fill the overflow saucer on your flower pot with gravel to allow water seeping through the pot to evaporate from the gravel. Hot temperatures indoors combined with high humidity will help the plant to thrive. Even one day without adequate moisture can cause the leaves to drop. Furthermore, decreasing temperatures can cause leaves to fall off. The goal is to keep the indoor temperature consistent.

While many poinsettia plants are discarded after the holiday season, these plants can actually be cut back and saved for next season. Trimming back any remaining leaves and continuing to care for the plant by keeping it moist can help. To force the blooms next season, start reducing the plant's exposure to sunlight in mid-September to October. Again, this will mean removing the plant to an area that is shrouded in complete darkness. Even streetlights or indoor lighting can affect blooming. If the plant does not begin to turn color before the holiday season, you may need to purchase a new plant and try again next year.

SurfKY News

© Copyright 2014 SurfKY News Group, Inc. All rights reserved. This material may not be published, broadcast, or rewritten without permission. SurfKY News encourages you to share this story by using one of the social media links below.

Latest Video

3/13 - 16

Stock Report

1 DOW 17,279.74
+13.75 (0.08%)    
2 S&P 2,010.40
-0.96 (-0.05%)    
3 NASDAQ 4,579.79
-13.64 (-0.30%)    
3/13 - 16
3/13 - 16

In Other News...

Air Products Donates 10 Laptops to Marshall County Schools

MARSHALL COUNTY, Ky. (9/21/14) — Air Products J.R. Reynolds presented 10 Dell laptop computers to Marshall County… Read More

Spring Creek Resident Has Special Visit From Faraway Sisters

MURRAY, Ky. (9/20/14) — Spring Creek resident Anne Beichner, pictured seated left, had a special visit over the weekend… Read More
3/13 - 16

Most Read This Week (Site-Wide)

September 19, 2014 3959

Madisonville Man Among Three Arrested for…

in Top Stories by Muhlenberg Sheriff Curtis McGehee
September 17, 2014 3531

Two Arrested for Meth After Traffic Stop

in Top Stories by Alex Piper
September 17, 2014 3264

Wanted Man Leads Troopers on Chase…

in Top Stories by Trooper Stu Recke
September 18, 2014 2544

Hopkins County Grand Jury Indictments

in News by Karen McKnight
September 19, 2014 2465

Five Injured in Two-Vehicle Collision at…

in Top Stories by MPD Officer Russell Nichols

Most Read Stories from Hopkins County

September 17, 2014 3264

Wanted Man Leads Troopers on Chase…

in Top Stories by Trooper Stu Recke
September 19, 2014 2465

Five Injured in Two-Vehicle Collision at…

in Top Stories by MPD Officer Russell Nichols
September 17, 2014 2019

Three Injured in Two-Vehicle Accident

in Top Stories by Kyle Pharris
September 18, 2014 1792

Manitou Man Charged with DUI

in Top Stories by Madisonville Police Department
September 18, 2014 1680

Vehicle Strikes CSX Train Cars at Crossing

in Top Stories by Trooper Stu Recke

Most Read Stories from Owensboro

September 19, 2014 712

Police Searching for Hit-And-Run Driver

in Top Stories by Jennifer Smith, DCSO
September 19, 2014 647

STREET CLOSINGS FOR MONDAY, SEPTEMBER 22

in Top Stories by Abby Shelton
September 18, 2014 584

Owensboro's Nathan Morris Has Worldwide…

in Top Stories by Paul McRee, SurfKY News
September 20, 2014 561

Man Charged with Theft After KSP…

in Top Stories by Alexis McGee
September 18, 2014 423

9-1-1 Phone Lines

in Top Stories by Michael Hathaway

Most Read Stories from Muhlenberg County

September 17, 2014 3531

Two Arrested for Meth After Traffic Stop

in Top Stories by Alex Piper
September 20, 2014 2020

Large Cache of Drugs, Cash, Gun Seized;…

in Top Stories by MCSO PIO Alex Piper
September 17, 2014 1606

Muhlenberg Job Corps Support is 'Written…

in Top Stories by Karen Robinson
September 20, 2014 887

Paradise NRA Banquet Promises Food, Fun,…

in Top Stories by Paul McRee, SurfKY News

SurfKY News Group, Inc. Central Office & Printing Division
1125 Nebo Rd.  •  Madisonville, KY 42431  •  270.452.2249 (fax)
Main Number: 270.452.2727 (phone)  •  Printing Division Direct Line: 270.821.8600 (phone)


Contact a member of our staff: www.surfky.com/contact
Copyright © 2014 SurfKY News Group, Inc.  •  Terms of Use  •  Site Map

social 03social 04social 22social 21social 06