The Euphorbia pulcherrima, commonly known as poinsettia, poinsettia or christmas flower, is a plant that is frequently used as a houseplant. It is a deciduous shrub of which there are more than 100 varieties and whose flowers bloom in winter, between the months of November and February, so in December they reach their perfect point for decorate the home with Christmas airs.
This plant, whose use has spread throughout the globe, grows naturally in Mexico and Guatemala so you have to take into account the temperature and light conditions to which it must be subjected to grow and live a long time.
What plant to buy
Today there is a great variety of poinsettia They can be bought both in florists and in decoration stores or supermarkets.
There are red, yellow, pink and with larger, smaller flowers, smooth leaves or with trimmed edges. Which one to buy to last longer?
Experts always recommend going for the traditional red poinsettia, since the rest are hybrids whose life is usually shorter. In addition, they give other tips to make the life of these plants longer:
– Before choosing a plant, it is advisable to check that it does not have no broken or rotten stem.
– With the trick of the coin, we can choose the ideal poinsettia to last a long time. You simply have to check the size of the mature florets in the coration of the bracts (leaves), since the more you have, the less the plant will last. The size of this part should be greater than a one euro coin but less than a two euro coin.
How to take care of it
Once at home, it is advisable to find a quiet place indoors (if the climate is mild they will also survive outdoors) away from drafts. It needs a lot of light when it is in flower and it does not matter that it receives direct sunlight in winter. If the environment is very dry, leaves can come off since they do not take well the heat or the heating.
Ideally, keep the plant between 19 and 21 degrees centigrade and use liquid organic compost, which will provide the necessary nutrients without risk of the roots suffering.