TIPS TO KEEP YOUR POINSETTIA BLOOMING
Poinsettias are a favorite living decoration during the Christmas season. New and amazing varieties have been developed that keep their brightly colored bracts for 8-10 weeks. Bracts are the showy, colored parts of the poinsettias that most people think of as the flowers - but in fact they are really a modified leaf. The traditional red varieties are popluar, but other varieties with white, pink, marbled and even variegated bracts are also excellent choices.
To keep Poinsettias at their best for the longest time, place them in a an area where they will receive bright, indirect light. Water when the surface of the soil feels dry to the touch. If your plant is wrapped in foil, be sure to punch a hole in the foil to allow for proper drainage. Poinsettias do not like overly wet soil. Ideal temperatures should never exceed 72 degrees during the day or 60 degrees at night in order to prolong the bright color of the bracts to remain. Avoid drafts or extreme temperatures from a cold window sill or a heating vent.
It is possible to grow your Poinsettia for another year. When the bracts begin to fade, cut the plant back 5 to 8 inches above the soil. Place it in a cool, medium light location and allow the soil to dry well between waterings. In late April or early May, repot and place it outdoors in a shady location. Fertilize once a month. In order to initiate flowering and color development of the bracts, Poinsettias need long night periods. Beginning October 1st, and continuing for six weeks, place the plant in a dark closet or an unused room each evening from 5-7pm. After six weeks, place the Poinsettia in bright, indirect light and water thoroughly when the soil is dry to the touch. The plant should soon flower and develop color in its bracts.
We hope your Poinsettia adds Christmas cheer and many days of enjoyment during the holiday season! Check out more of our favorite HOLIDAY PLANTS. >>