Care & Cultivation Guide: Poinsettia

The symbol of Christmas 

If the bright red berries of holly and the evergreen foliage of ivy are the symbols of Christmas outdoors, then the poinsettia with its large brightly coloured bracts, (modified leaves) is surely the symbol of Christmas indoors. Compact and rounded in habit with an amazingly varied range of colours, the past 25 years has seen a huge increase in the popularity of poinsettias. Often, mistakenly, regarded as difficult to look after, poinsettias provide several months of colour if a few simple rules are followed.  

POSITION: Place near a sunny window as poinsettias require bright but filtered light. A window facing south, east or west is better than one facing north. Do not let any part of the plant touch the cold windowpane as this may damage it. Avoid exposing the plant to hot or cold draughts, which may cause premature leaf drop. 

CARE: Maintain a temperature of 15-21c during daylight hours. If possible, move the poinsettia to a cooler place at night. But, not below 15c as root disease is more prevalent at temperatures below this. 

Generally speaking, if you are comfortable, so is your poinsettia! 

Examine the compost daily, and when the surface is dry to the touch, water thoroughly. Do not leave the plant standing in water. Overly wet compost lacks sufficient air, which results in root damage and possible death. A wilted plant may drop its leaves prematurely, so check compost frequently and if dry, water immediately. Plants exposed to high light and low humidity require more frequent watering.  

Every effort has been made to ensure the accuracy of the information given both on our lists and labels. However, some details may vary according to special or geographical circumstances. Varieties offered are subject to availability.  

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