Monday, December 17, 2012

Monday, December 10, 2012


It’s that time of the year when you’ll find lovely Poinsettias to brighten the Holidays. A question often arises how do I keep my plant looking nice throughout the Holiday season and on into Spring?

Poinsettias are tropical warm loving plants that like good light. Place it near a sunny window. South, east or west facing windows are preferable to a north facing window. Water the plant whenever the surface feels dry to the touch. Water until it drains out the bottom, but don’t let the plant sit in water. Wilting is another common cause of leaf drop. A wilted plant can be revived and salvaged, but it will take another season to improve its appearance. Fertilizer is not necessary until the days lengthen in February. Keep them from drafty areas such as doorways.

Humidity- Lack of humidity during dry seasons, in particular winter, is an ongoing houseplant problem. If your home tends to be dry and your poinsettia is in direct light, you will find yourself watering frequently, possibly every day.

When you purchase your Poinsettia be sure you keep it warm until you get home with it. Make it your last purchase before going home so it doesn’t sit in an unheated car while you shop.

To Rebloom for the next season:
During winter, continue to follow holiday upkeep tips.
March 17 (St. Patrick's Day): When bracts fade, cut stems back to eight inches above soil line.  Continue to water regularly.

Lightly fertilize with a good, balanced all-purpose fertilizer every three to four weeks.
When temperatures are warm, place plant outdoors; first in indirect, then direct sunlight. Avoid temperatures below 50 degrees throughout the summer.

July 4 (Independence Day): Cut back new growth stems. Repot if needed.
Early September (Labor Day): Move plant inside. Provide six or more hours of direct light.
October 1 through mid-December: Confine plant to complete darkness for 14 hours, giving it 10 hours of natural light daily. This will set the buds and cause bracts to color.