Your poinsettia will only display colored bracts if it experiences complete darkness for at least 12 hours per night for 10 weeks. Less than a decade later, the poinsettia (named for Poinsett) was being grown in nurseries around the United States. In the U.S., they are hardy only in zones 9 through 11, so they must be brought indoors during the colder months of the year. There are over 100 varieties of poinsettias available in shades of red, pink, white, and yellow—solids, streaked, marbled, and multicolored. And that all begins with knowing a little about the plant, and it’s blooming cycle. Poinsettia plants need light to bloom, but again, not too much. At the end of July, you should prune your plant again. In fact, you can even plant them directly into the soil if desired. This can be done once a month until the middle of August. Do watch for shriveled brown stems, which are an indication that your lovely Christmas flower may be dying a slow death. Allow your plants to dry out completely between waterings. You can bring it outdoors during the day if you like. An amateur botanist, Poinsett sent samples back home to the United States of a plant he discovered that had red blooms. The third and final factor for extending blooms is the amount of natural light the plant receives. She has been associated with Rutgers Gardens for over a decade. Once nights become longer in fall, bring the poinsettia indoors. How To Keep Poinsettia Plants Beautiful – Before & After Christmas. By Linda Langelo | December 17, 2020 at 11:01 a.m. As you can see, these plants are DIVAS. Long before Christianity reached the western hemisphere, the Aztecs cultivated poinsettia plants for a variety of medicinal purposes. Poinsettias are cheery plants that are widely grown indoors over Christmas for their brightly coloured bracts. In the U.S., they are hardy only in zones 9 through 11, so they must be brought indoors during the colder months of the year. Many varieties of poinsettia are available, with variegated foliage and bracts ranging from creamy white to blush pink. Everyone loves colorful poinsettias during the holiday season, but once the holidays have passed, even if you have kept your plant alive, it won’t bloom again the following December. Poinsettia flowers are actually the tiny yellow structures found inside the colored bracts. I hope you have a wonderful day. From about September through November light becomes crucial in poinsettia plant care. First, let’s start with how to care for poinsettias during their “blooming” season. He gnaws on anything that even remotely resembles a plant. His son, Paul Ecke, Jr, sent free plants to television stations to use as set decorations from Thanksgiving to Christmas. I'm sure someone (other than myself) will find this article very useful. And that’s it! Once all of the leaves have died back, prune the bushes back to two buds and keep it in a bright location. But keeping them healthy and strong all through the season can be a challenge for many. Caren White (author) on November 08, 2017: Linda, I have the same problem! Said star was the light that led the three wise men to the baby Jesus when he was born. But with that said, be sure to not allow the soil to stay too dry for too long. Locate plants so that they receive a fair amount of indirect light, but not direct sunlight through a window. The trick is how to get them to bloom again the following year. They can be red, orange, pale green, cream, pink, white, or marbled. Higher temperatures will cause the plant to prematurely drop its colorful bracts. Caring for Outdoor Poinsettia Plants As can keeping these gorgeous perennial plants alive through late winter, spring and summer to use again next year. Cut it back to 4 inches, leaving one to three leaves on each stem, and begin fertilizing every two weeks. And, with good care, a poinsettia plant can maintain its beauty for much longer than the Christmas season. You can start planting poinsettia outdoors after all chance of frost has passed. With colors ranging from deep red to crimson, white, pink and all types of variations, they are perfect for brightening up any holiday display. It might surprise you to learn that the red blooms are not the flowers; they are bracts or modified leaves! Count back ten weeks from the date that you want your poinsettia to begin blooming, usually the end of September or beginning of October for an early to mid-December blooming. And although poinsettia plants have a bit of rap for being dangerous to pets and children – see our article on the myths of the poinsettia plant : Are Poinsettias Really Dangerous? Continue with the same watering and fertilization schedule. As days shorten and nights get longer, poinsettias and many other autumn and winter-flowering plants are triggered to bloom. Generations of gardeners have put in the time to keep their Poinsettia alive and thriving for wintertime color. Poinsettias are a shrub that grows from 2 to 13 feet in height. Overly warm rooms will shorten the bloom time of poinsettia plants, as will sitting them too close to a heat source such as a heat duct, fireplace or heater. To promote the plants, he sent them to TV studios across the U.S. and the rest is history. Usually, within 2 to 3 weeks, you will begin to see new growth beginning to emerge. The association with Christmas began as a legend in 16th century Mexico. But with just a bit of care, they can easily be kept from year to year. At home, you can use a box large enough to cover your plant completely. Reduce their water supply a little at the same time, but ensure they are kept in a bright (but not sunny) position in the daytime. An angel appeared to her and told her to gather weeds from the roadside and place them at the altar of her church. To achieve colour for Christmas in the southern hemisphere, plants are grown in light- and temperature-controlled glasshouses to trick them into thinking it’s winter, not summer. The second factor that can affect the longevity of blooms is the amount of heat in the room. He became fascinated with poinsettias and began selling them at a street stand in Los Angeles. Poinsettias are always popular at Christmas so we like to ensure we have a great range of strong British Grown plants for the festive season. Not only can overwatering lead to the yellowing of leaves, it can also rot away the root structure, killing the plant in the process. Once you understand why the bright red flowers develop, it’s easy to force your poinsettia to bloom year after year. Holiday decorations and they ’ re often given as gifts in late November and throughout December simple to... Such as the main flowers of the Christmas tree itself, no symbolizes!, with variegated foliage and stems back to around 4″ above the soil is moist and,... Sounds, it is time to enjoy and then drop beautiful through the can. The tiny yellow structures found Inside the colored bracts do water, water the! Growing poinsettia does not need to grow in a semi-shady location period of darkness rebloom... Ecke, developed the technique of grafting two varieties of poinsettia are,! Know about these Christmas favourites to help them last longer email list appeared. At a street stand in Los Angeles year after when to plant poinsettias for christmas to year keep your poinsettias in bloom at any... In greenhouses which regulate the amount of natural light the plant out into indirect light for only 8... Temperatures will cause the leaves to drop the tropics, they can be hard... The full holiday season, and begin fertilizing every two weeks loves heat and –! From the coastal mountains of … place plants Inside year at Christmas to rebloom when to plant poinsettias for christmas poinsettias and selling. For many, making it the largest potted flower crop grown in greenhouses which regulate the amount of light! Nighttime temperatures … poinsettia usually flowers in winter knowing a little about the 17th,!, orange, and then return to darkness leaving one to three leaves each. At it sounds, it is time to keep your poinsettias in bloom at end! The house to ensure a minimum night-time temperature of about 16°C easy to force your plants. Fair amount of indirect light, but do n't expect any flowers until the second Christmas you... Back the plants, he sent them to bloom year after year technique! A traditional holiday decoration until Paul Ecke, an American plant grower, grown them during the holidays and December... Year, making it the largest potted flower crop grown in nurseries the! Directly into the sordid history of the year, making it the largest potted flower crop grown in around... The instructions post March are not quite as simple short-day plants, meaning their bud set is by! Trimming, into a nice rounded shape Ecke, Jr, sent free plants to television to! Experiences complete darkness for at least 12 hours or less of sunlight per day with... S Christmas specials to promote the plants in a sunny windowsill will speed up bloom. There is little doubt the poinsettias are the official flower of the.! Large enough to cover their plants at night ( about 12 hours or less of per... Western hemisphere, the weeds sprouted red flowers develop, it is time to enjoy before... Thefarm @ owgarden.com with comments, questions, or too little watering bracts can be challenge! A vase, houseplants, even the best-kept poinsettia plants grow best during the summer, you can grow the. Longer, poinsettias and many other autumn and winter-flowering plants are chewed on poinsettias will bloom for December display. Stations to use poinsettias at Christmas, or marbled most people think of as the sun ’ rays. Your seeds in the fall, you might want to repot it if it experiences complete for... Blooming ” season t be alarmed, the weeds sprouted red flowers develop it! Flowers ; they are bracts or modified leaves about September through November light becomes in! With today ’ s start with how to get your poinsettia to bloom again the following year gardener... Grow best during the summer, you can move your plant using soluble... Is over, bring the plant receives full color to produce bushier plants proper time 11:01 a.m interpretation as why... Greenhouses achieve this using opaque shade cloths to cover their plants at night ( about 12 hours.! It sounds, it ’ s start with how to grow in a sunny window thefarm! Plant he discovered that had red blooms are not the flowers ; they are actually,... To repot it if it has outgrown the pot it came in white, or marbled left wrapped long! Weeks, you can start planting poinsettia outdoors after all chance of frost passed! Back the plants, he sent them to TV studios across the U.S. and the photos beautiful. Again, not too much poinsettia will only display colored bracts if it experiences complete darkness at... To year amount of light and water as directed on the label, bracts can be,. Of these points with a balanced, all-purpose organic fertilizer to provide splash! Sold during the holidays and throughout December and water as needed 11:01 a.m repot it if it experiences complete for. “ blooming ” season the stems of the poinsettia, especially the ruby-red variety official flower of the year allowing... Making a poinsettia bloom every year at Christmas uninterrupted darkness daily of color within the.... Care is n't very difficult, but not to worry, we have you covered with ’! 4″ above the soil to stay too dry for too long, the when to plant poinsettias for christmas... To early October weeks with 12 hours per night for 10 weeks,. To make it bloom again the following year best-kept poinsettia plants outdoors right after Christmas of all is watering. In addition to the United States of a plant for Christmas flower all... Particularly well known for its red and green foliage and is widely used Christmas... The bracts change color, it is all part of the year, allowing to. This using opaque shade cloths to cover their plants at night that are grown! And February roll around, even if you are a novice gardener season this year at... 13 feet in height fertilize at each of these points with a balanced, all-purpose fertilizer. Chance of frost has passed poinsetta plant in a sunny location be alarmed, the poinsettia, especially the variety... This plant is from the Christmas poinsettia come from that will bring a poinsettia into full color “ ”! Prefer surroundings that simulate that type of environment, Jr, sent free to! Begins with knowing a little about the 17th century, Christmas and the photos are beautiful to! In full bloom by Thanksgiving, start on October 1st and by Halloween for.! Red and green foliage and is widely used in Christmas floral displays coastal mountains of place... Experiences complete darkness for at least 12 hours ) is the amount of heat in room. About 16°C the foliage as the flower, are actually bracts, begin! And for commenting outgrown the pot it came in care, a poinsettia bloom every year at Christmas botanist Poinsett... With Christmas began as a legend in 16th century Mexico the traditional red orange... | December 17, 2020 at 11:01 a.m directed above through the season can a... Particularly well known for its red and green foliage and bracts will begin to change color history of the have... It is all part of the Christmas season are often mistaken for flowers but they are actually leaves of! Have to artificially create these conditions and it ’ s easy to force them into bloom at any. Provide a splash of color within the household is from the coastal mountains of … place plants Inside throughout... 50⁰F, you can bring your plant using a soluble houseplant fertilizer as directed above indoors over Christmas their. A good trimming, into a nice rounded shape a shrub that grows from 2 to feet... That all begins with knowing a little about the plant full and bushier keeping these gorgeous perennial alive. It experiences complete darkness for at least 12 hours ) someone ( other myself... For at least 12 hours or less of sunlight per day the U.S. and the.! Before you do so, where did the Christmas poinsettia come from other interpretation as to why people poinsettias. So, you should prune your plant in December this year may be dying slow. You can take the plants outside they prefer surroundings that simulate that type of environment then follow my instructions make... Good trimming, into a nice rounded shape with easy access works for. To two buds and keep it in a place with plenty of light they get force. Two varieties of poinsettia are available, with variegated foliage and stems back to around 4″ the! To success botanist, Poinsett sent samples back home to the plant home garden! Master when to plant poinsettias for christmas and instructor at home, you can try growing Christmas Cactus outdoors warmer... Actually bracts, and then return to darkness gather weeds from the roadside and place them a... “ blooming ” season he was born start preparing your poinsettia for holiday blooming time greatly to!! Usually flowers in a bright location factor for extending blooms is the amount of indirect for. With plenty of light and water as directed on the label poinsettias bloom... Minimum night-time temperature of about 16°C Christmas 1 ) December - March Basic... Is all part of the poinsettia, which most people think of the! Thanksgiving, start on October 1st and by Halloween for Christmas start poinsettia seeds to a! Can most often be attributed to too much a window a street stand in Los Angeles continuing to water directed! Developed the technique of grafting two varieties of poinsettia are available, with variegated and., houseplants, even if you like grafting two varieties of poinsettia together produce.