Friday, December 20, 2013

The Mexican Poinsettia Christmas Tradition

Wintering in Mexico I've become accustomed to poinsettia plants - native to Mexico - growing in the wild in tropical forests. The bright red and green colors of the poinsettia have made it a traditional Christmas plant in the US; in Mexico it is commonly called Noche Buena: Christmas Eve in Spanish.

Long dark nights and bright sunny days give the poinsettia its bold red leaves, and the plant is now grown commercially in California, Egypt, Australia and Malta.

In Mexico, poinsettia's are sometimes planted at the end of each vineyard row because they are susceptible to some of the same molds and diseases as grapevines. A diseased poinsettia plant alerts the vintner to possible disease in the grapevines, similar to how roses are planted at the end of each vineyard row in other parts of the world.

To keep your poinsettia plant blooming indoors, place it in a sunny window and keep it at a temperature of 65-75°, and slightly cooler at night; water when dry to the touch.

Wishing you a very happy holiday season,

      Feliz Navidad!   Joyeux Noël!   Merry Christmas!

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