Poinsettia – the Star of the Christmas Table. Take Good Care of It and You Will Enjoy Its Beauty Next Year, Too.

    Poinsettia – the Star of the Christmas Table. Take Good Care of It and You Will Enjoy Its Beauty Next Year, Too.

    5:25 PM EST, December 25, 2022, updated: 7:03 PM EST, December 25, 2022

    When December comes, we many people begin to look for poinsettia to decorate Christmas tables. Find out how to take good care of it so that we can enjoy its spectacular appearance as long as it is possible.


    A guest from Mexico

    The plant coming in a number of names (including Bethlehem star) has its natural habitat in Mexico and Guatemala. It is a shrub growing up to 3 meters. Its bare stems bear dark green dentate leaves. Potted they develop their red inflorescence in the winter and this is why the plant is so appreciated.


    A plant that hates the cold

    While buying the plant you should carefully inspect the leaves. There can be no stains. A healthy plant is firm, green and it does not hang down. Unfortunately, the plant is really sensitive to low temperatures. That is why always wrap it with paper when you want to take it home. Never buy a plant that was stored outside as once it gets inside, higher ambient temperature will result in leaf loss.


    Poinsettia prefers:

    • dispersed light,

    • temperature range of 18 – 22 C,

    • a slightly dump medium,

    • fertilizers with low content of nitrogen (to be used in the winter).


    The plant prefers light spots. It will feel best on a window sill (though not directly above a radiator) or anywhere else with a lot of light. If you want to put it on the table, make sure it’s not too far from the window.


    The best temperature range for the plant is 18 – 22 0 C. If the temperature is too high, the plant loses its leaves. The plant does not tolerate draughts and streams of cold air. Remember about it whenever you want to open the window (s) to air the room.



    The plant does not like being too dry or overwatered. The soil should be slightly damp. Water the plant every two days with small amounts of water. If there is some water on the saucer, remove it immediately.

    After blossoming

    The plant loses its leaves in January or February. Do not throw it away – just take good care of it so that it will bloom next December. Cut the sprouts (to 20 cm) and keep it in a room with ambient temperature of about 15 C for about 4 – 6 weeks. Don't water or fertilize the plant then. Next repot the plant and put it in the original spot.

    What can we do to make the plant bloom again?

    If you want your poinsettia to have its spectacular leaves you need to perform a simple operation. From the mid October the plant has to stay in darkness for 14 hours, and for 10 hours in a bright place. The simplest solution is to cover it with a cardboard box between 5 pm and 7 am or just take into a dark room. Remember to keep it regular or else the leaves will stay green.


    The poinsettia leaves don't have to be red. There are varieties with white, pink orange or even two-colored leaves.


    Did you buy a poinsettia this year?

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