The poinsettia plant, with its brilliant red flowers, is virtually synonymous with the Christmas season.
Popular legend traces the association back to a the story of a poor young girl who wished to offer the Christ child something on Christmas Eve. As she had nothing to give, she picked some weeds by the side of the road on her way to see the baby, and laid them at his feet. The weeds transformed before everyone’s eyes into the beautiful poinsettia, teaching those present that even the simplest of gifts, if given in love, was accepted by God. Over the years, the poinsettia has continued to have religious connotations at Christmastime.
There are many reasons to have poinsettias adorning your home this holiday season. Aside from being the Christmas flower, the poinsettia is also one of December’s birth flowers. It symbolizes joy, celebration and success; and even has its own national day, on December 12th. While quite beautiful and hardy looking, the poinsettia does require specific care.
To give your tropical poinsettia its longest life, the light, temperature and watering conditions are important. Keeping the flowers in a sunny place will give them the light they need, and temperatures of about 70 degrees are optimal. If you keep your home warmer during the day, place the plants in cooler rooms or outside at night – temperatures of 55 degrees will be best for vibrant blooms. The moisture level of the soil is paramount to successful growing; the flower needs enough water to soak all the soil, but root rot will occur if there is excess of standing water. If your plant begins to wilt or its leaves start dropping off, it likely needs more water. By cutting back older stems and fertilizing every couple of weeks, you can keep the poinsettia blooming long after the Christmas gifts are exchanged.
Although poinsettias have earned a dangerous reputation, it is largely unfounded. While the plant is mildly toxic to dogs and cats, symptoms are rarely severe enough to even warrant medical attention. So this season, feel free to decorate your entire home with this beautiful and traditional flower. Ah Sam of San Mateo has both red and white poinsettias for your home, office or to give as thoughtful and meaningful gifts. Call or stop by today for all your seasonal floral needs.