Care of Poinsettia

How to take care of a Poinsettia

Poinsettia is a well-known plant species which has been grown in Egypt from the 1860s onwards when it came from Mexico. It is known as the consul’s daughter which is a reference to Joel Roberts Poinsett, the U.S. Ambassador to Mexico who introduced it in the United States. Poinsettia is known for its distinctive green and red foliage and has more than 100 cultivated types.

Poinsettias are attractive options for festivals and celebrations like Christmas. They are popular when it comes to holiday decorations. However, the right Poinsettia care techniques are essential in order to enjoy their beauty for prolonged periods of time. Caring for these Christmas plants requires a little effort and homework on your part.

Here Are Some of the Top Care Tips for Poinsettia Plants:

  • Right Temperature, Water & Light - Caring for poinsettia flowers starts with ensuring that they are kept in humid and semi-cool environments with indirect yet bright light and ample moisture. Poinsettia trees should always be watered extensively and do ensure that drainage is present. You should not keep these in saucers filled with water. The addition of plants nearby can also help in scaling up humidity levels and so will humidifiers. The White Poinsettia or other varieties have to be repositioned in darker and cooler zones till spring or April approximately.
  • Suitable Fertilizing Techniques- Poinsettias should be fertilized while they are blooming. Fertilizer should be applied every couple of weeks or on a monthly basis. The plant will start regrowing within a few weeks.
  • Post-Holiday Care - In the spring season, the plant should be returned to a sunny zone and should be suitably watered. All branches/canes should be cut to approximately 6 inches from the rim of the pot. Poinsettias can be placed indoors in the summer season and the tips should be pinched out for more branching once the plant attains 6-10 inches of growth. This has to be done once every month till mid-August.
  • Leaves Falling Off - When the leaves of these white/red Christmas flowers start falling off, you should zero in on the right causes. Environmental aspects including warm and dry climes usually lead to dropping of leaves. Keep the plant in a cool zone and water nicely.
  • Light - The plant should be kept in decent light although positioning it in direct sunlight will hinder growth. People often make a mistake of moving these plants continually between cold and hot temperatures.
  • Overwatering - Refrain from overwatering the plant and pause until the compost surface dries out completely. You should then water extensively and use houseplant fertilizer for feeding the plant once every week.
  • Keeping the plant indoors - You can use a pebble tray for keeping the plant since humid environs prolong its life in most cases.
  • Rescuing a Wilted Plant - One should never discard a poinsettia plant, which has wilted. Wilted Poinsettia plants may have lowered lifespans and you should try to rescue it. The root ball should be soaked in warm water and this will help in revival of the plant. The plant should be able to revive within an hour and you should not discard the plant until then.
  • Lowering Watering Levels - Lower watering in the month of March and prune the plant once the leaves are dropped. Keep it mostly dry in this period.
  • Increasing Watering Levels - Increase watering for the plant in early-May and re-pot the same when new shoots start appearing.
  • Weekly feeding - Feed the plant once it grows with a liquid fertilizer on a weekly basis.
  • Balanced Temperature Conditions - From the 10th of October, to the end of the month, allow your Poinsettia plants to get 12 hours of light every day and they should be in darkness for the next 12 hours. Minimum temperatures should touch 18 degrees Celsius. Artificial light can be used wherever necessary.

These tips will help you take care of Poinsettia plants and watch them bloom all over again even after the holiday season is over!