8th – Impress at a quiz if asked to identify the plant known in Latin as Euphorbia pulcherrima. You’ve guessed correctly… it’s the poinsettia!
9th – Fun fact: what’s the link between poinsettia and Christmas? There are a few legends in folklore. One tells of a little girl who picked a bunch of weeds to gift baby Jesus, which miraculously turned a beautiful shade of red. It’s also claimed that the plants’ star-shaped leaf formations are a symbol of the Star of Bethlehem, which guided the Wise Men to Jesus’ Bethlehem birthplace in the nativity.
10th – Planning to buy a poinsettia? Once purchased, don’t take your plant on a road trip. Poinsettias love to be kept cosy and can sulk if left to shiver in a freezing cold car. Get it settled into your warm home quickly.
11th – Keen to let your creative juices flow? Colourful poinsettia bracts are a perfect accompaniment in home-made hanging decorations and work a treat when incorporated into Advent wreathes complete with festive candles.
12th – Sunday 12th December is International Poinsettia Day. It commemorates the death of famed botanist Joel Robert Poinsett. Why not get into the festive spirit and snap up one of these Christmas wonders, helping to celebrate this Yuletide tradition from over the pond?
13th – Sudden changes in temperature are one of the biggest causes of sickly poinsettias. Ask the store checkout operator to carefully wrap your plant in paper to protect it from winter chills on the way home.
14th – Avoid placing poinsettias on window sills. Not only do they hate draughts, but temperatures plunge at night when curtains are closed, leaving plants in distress. Porches, fireplaces and conservatories are a no-no, too, as they get chilly at night in winter.