Happy holiday season! Now that Thanksgiving has come and gone, it’s pretty safe to say that everyone’s focus is on all of the fun holiday happenings that come with the end of the year – we know that’s what we’re thinking about! Between decorating, shopping and holiday parties alone, there are so many awesome things about the last few weeks of December.
But let’s go back to the decorating part for a moment – did you know that poinsettias are one of the most popular flowers associated with the Christmas season? Since you’ll probably see tons of poinsettia displays as you shop around town this month, get to know more about them by checking out these awesome poinsettia facts below.
- A poinsettia plant’s botanical name is “euphorbia pulcherrima,” which translates to “very beautiful.”
- Joel Roberts Poinsett, the first U.S Ambassador to Mexico and a U.S Congressman, is credited as the first person to introduce poinsettias to the United States after discovering them in Mexico.
- Poinsettias were given the name “poinsettia” by William Prescott. After learning the story of Joel’s findings, Prescott renamed the plant after him.
- Speaking of Joel Roberts Poinsett, December 12th has been named Poinsettia Day in his honor; December 12th is the day that Mr. Poinsett passed away.
- The red blooms we see on poinsettia plants are actually not flowers; rather, they are known as bracts. By definition, bracts are simply modified leaves. The actual “flower” on a poinsettia plant is the yellow bloom found right at the center of the bracts.
- The majority of poinsettias found in the U.S are grown and produced in California.
- You must never let your poinsettia sit in water. The soil should never be soggy or dry, just moist. Wait a half hour after watering and drain off any excess water.
- Though they are most notably found during the holidays, poinsettias can bloom again after the season is over which makes them perennials! However, getting them to do so requires a ton of care throughout the spring and summer.
- Contrary to popular belief, poinsettias are not poisonous. Research shows that a child would have to eat more than 500 leaves in order to experience really serious effects, but that’s not to say that it won’t make you sick. To be safe, it’s best to keep poinsettias away from children & pets.
- You can find poinsettias in over 100 different colors! While prestige red is the most common, you can also find plants whose bracts are white, pink or even gold!
- The color of Poinsettia leaves is actually determined by how much light it gets. For red leaves, the plants need bright light during the day and pitch black at night (for at least 12 hours).
Did you learn something new by reading this list? The next time you see a poinsettia, impress friends and family by rattling off some of these facts! Happy holidays everyone!
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