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One of the most popular staples for Christmas decor is a Poinsettia. You can find them for purchase at almost any hardware or grocery store, and they are on display at many businesses and homes. There is something so cheery about the bring red leaves on your front porch. And since these plants last the season, sometimes it is difficult to throw them out when they are still looking nice. Here are a few tips and tricks to help keep your Poinsettia alive so that you do not have to buy them year after year.

Poinsettias are grown in Mexico, so they are used to bright sun and warmer temperatures. If you have a window that gets a good amount of indirect light, that would be a perfect spot for your Poinsettia. The ideal temperature is about 60 degrees to avoid any leaves falling off. Water when the top of the soil dries out. This way, you should be able to keep your blooms until April!

Once your plant has become leggy, or around April – May, it is time to trim the branches. Cut the branches back to about 4 inches above the soil. This is also a good time to repot and/or fertilize your plant. Once the temperature outside has risen above 50 degrees at night, you can put your plant outside to get plenty of sun. Remember to water it when the top of the soil is dry. You can prune your plant again to achieve side branching, which will allow for a full plant with 2 to 3 leaves on each shoot. When the weather reaches down below 50 at night, make sure to bring your plant back inside.

At this point, put your Poinsettia in a dark closet or cover it with a large box for 12-14 hours a day in order to achieve that characteristic red bloom. This should be done for 8-10 weeks before you would like your plant to bloom. By Christmas, you should have a beautiful Poinsettia for the centerpiece of your decorations!



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