Where Christmas Poinsettias Come From

We might be used to buying Christmas presents at the last minute once December rolls around, but preparation starts in the summer for some Christmas favorites!

Poinsettias are the large, red flowers seen in homes across the Americas during Christmas. A lot of work goes into getting them to bloom at just the right time and still be able to survive the shipment to our local stores.

This story from MyDailyTribune in Mason, Ohio shows the preparation that it takes to plant and take care of 50,000 containers of Christmas poinsettias.

The large poinsettia plants that you'll see in the store are actually grown from a leaf cutting, so at the plant nursery in Ohio, 100,000 leaf cuttings are shipped in from Africa and Central America, then planted and grown into the final plants. Starting in August, they will be grown and pruned so that they grow into the large, bushy green plants that will adorn our porch stoops and fireplaces.

Even though these plants are grown in a greenhouse, around October 1st, they'll need to be stored in complete darkness for 12 hours each day to stimulate them to bloom around Christmas time. If all goes well, the months of care and proper timing should result in beautiful, festive plants!

Did you know? Poinsettia plants are not poisonous, despite a long-standing rumor. Eating the plants may cause a stomach ache for children or pets, but no serious effects should occur.

(Image via MyDailyTribune)