Colorful and highly decorative, poinsenttia can last a long time if you treat it with care. We tell you how to do it. The poinsettia comes from Mexico and Central America and is the quintessential Christmas flower. It acquires different names according to the countries where it is grown. In Mexico, it is called Pascuero and in Argentina Estrella Federal. The name of poinsettia, by which it is known in many parts of the world, comes from Joel Roberts Poinsett, United States ambassador to Mexico, who popularized it in North America.
The main characteristic of this plant is its striking colored leaves that make it very decorative. These leaves are called bracts and have nothing to do with the flowers, which are very tiny and have no decorative interest. These bracts can be found in different colors: yellow, white, salmon, pink, although the red leaves of the poinsettia are the most common and the most attractive, so it is perfect to add a pinch of color to your home with the Poinsettia and Christmas wreaths. The poinsettia is a good gift if you are invited to a Christmas celebration. It is a gesture that conveys good wishes and that you want to gift the house you visit with fortune and prosperity.
HOW LONG DOES THE POINSETTIA LAST
They are delicate plants, you just have to remember their tropical origin. First, remove the plastic in which it is wrapped, because it suffocates the leaves. In winter, poinsettia care is key: they need natural light, so find a room with high ambient humidity and put the pot in a corner next to a window, where the heating does not reach. High temperatures often wilt poinsettia foliage.
Why do the poinsettia leaves fall off? All excesses hurt him. The main reasons that the poinsettia has withered leaves, even loses them are: lack of light, strong drafts and excessive exposure to cold.
Nor is it convenient for an excess of watering, so you have to make sure that water does not accumulate on the underplate and the roots rot. Also, remove wilted leaves for healthy growth. Pay attention, because we have all the poinsettia care with tricks to make it last longer.
When winter is over and the days get longer, you can plant the poinsettia outside and see how it behaves like a shrub. Before installing it in the garden, you should prune the poinsettia with scissors, since it is a plant that branches easily, and you will observe that it will grow until October.
If you have a good hand with plants, you can try making poinsettia cuttings to make it reproduce. Between November. and December, you can cut a healthy branch stem, then cut the flower and also the leaves in half (which prevents excess perspiration. You will see how the sap appears, it is normal, but avoid twisting it because it irritates the skin. cut you have to insert it in a mini pot, which is inserted into the ground. This universal substrate has to have enough moisture, but not waterlogged. The cuttings have to grow in dry environments and always away from sunlight and heating. Now we have to wait until that the roots grow and be able to carry out a transplant.
The common diseases of poinsettia are aphids and whiteflies, so it is advisable to check the underside of the leaves from time to time and treat it with an insectide. If rhizoctonia solani fungi appear, you will see that the stem turns black.
TIPS FOR BUYING POINSETTIA
Christmas decor with hanging pots of poinsettias or poinsettias
What should you look for when buying a poinsettia? When you buy a poinsettia you have to check that there are not too many mature flowers in the heart of the bracts, since the more you have, the less the plant will last. You should also check that it does not have any broken or rotten stems, spots on the leaves, etc. What type of soil does it need? The best thing is that the land has a good drainage, so that no puddles occur. The substrate must be rich in organic substances and have a little peat.
Can it be made to last from one year to the next? Yes, but it is not easy to achieve it. If you want to try it, when the leaves have fallen, prune it leaving only 6 cm of stem. Then, move it to a larger pot and water it without fertilizing until leaves grow. When these start to appear, you will have to pay. To get the leaves to turn red you will have to have it 14 hours a day, the months of September, October and November, in complete darkness, covering it with a black bag.
The ponsettia does not have the red leaves, only when it blooms in winter, that’s why it is called poinsettia
LIGHT: The poinsettia is a plant that needs a lot of light, especially when it is in flower.
TEMPERATURE: The ideal is between 15 and 20º C. You have to be careful with the heating, since a very dry environment will cause the leaves to spoil quickly and end up falling. To avoid this, you have to create a more humid environment by putting, for example, a bowl of water near the radiator so that it evaporates.
IRRIGATION: In summer, until flowering; water twice a week, letting the soil dry between watering and watering. A good idea is to put the pot on a plate with water for about 15 minutes, so it will absorb the water it needs.
FERTILIZER: Every 15 days with liquid fertilizer during the growing season (from mid-spring to late summer). Flower fertilizers should not be applied when the bracts begin to take color.
PROBLEMS THAT POISETTIA CAN PRESENT
Poinsettias with red leaves in clay pots
The leaves are blackish in appearance. The plant is rotting and the cause is poor watering. To save it, we will suspend the watering, we will prune it well and we will leave it in a shady place waiting for it to sprout again next season. The leaves of the plant turn yellow and eventually fall off. This can be due to excess heat, drafts or lack of light. Put the plant in a bright place, without drafts, and water regularly.The leaves lose color. The cause of this is an excess of water. Let the soil dry between watering and watering. The leaves of the plant have multiple gray spots. It is because he has brotitis; treat it with a fungicide. The plant is flaccid.This is because it is exposed to drafts. To help it recover, put it in a place where it is more protected. It is the undisputed star of Christmas plants, proof of this are the one hundred million poinsettias that are sold every year around the world.
YOU MUST TAKE INTO ACCOUNT When buying it. Choose a plant that has many shoots and wrap it well when you take it home, as it is very sensitive to cold. Where to put it.In a warm and bright place and always away from drafts. When to water it. Only when the ground is dry. And, very important, if when doing so, water comes out of the dish, throw it away, since the plant rots if it has too much humidity. Your flowers can be cut to make centers. In this case, as soon as you cut, bring a flame to the stem, thus cauterizing the cut and stopping the output of the sap. In this way you will have the fresh flower for approximately two weeks.
AN ECOFRIENDLY TREE
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If this Christmas you want to put a tree in your house, buy a cultivated one, in this way you will prevent the forests from being cut down, since this kind of tree is grown as if it were any other ornamental plant. When Christmas is over, if you don’t have a place to plant the tree, call your town hall, as most organize the collection of these trees, which are then shredded and used as garden compost.