Magical decoration with poinsettias

When poinsettias appear in the shops again, you know that Christmas is coming. No other plant is as strongly associated with the festive season as the beautiful poinsettia. This is probably because their large, star-shaped and brightly coloured bracts make them the most popular ornamental plant during the winter season all over the world. But not only as a pot plant is the poinsettia a real eye-catcher, also as a cut flower arranged in a vase or as part of an elaborate arrangement, it draws everyone’s attention and makes for a wonderful feast of colour.

The star among Christmas plants is originally a native of Central and South America, but its international career began like the sparkling stories of so many stars: in Hollywood. Inspired by Christmas stars growing in the wild near his farm Paul Ecke, an American with German roots, started cultivating poinsettias in California at the end of the 19th century. His first success came with the freshly cut poinsettia branches, which he marketed in Hollywood as a Christmas plant for the festive season. Whether as a bouquet, a magnificent arrangement, or as an opulent door decoration, the
unique star-shaped bracts quickly became a popular decoration for
American homes, and eventually the poinsettia became a Christmas plant with tradition.

Many people mainly think of them as potted plants. And yet with very little effort these timeless beauties can be arranged as cut flowers. These pretty plants impress not only in their classic red, but in a surprisingly wide variety of coulours: in white, cream, yellow, pink, apricot, soft pastel shades, and occasionally with colour gradients or speckles, the bracts take a stunningly beautiful appearance. Thanks to the wide range of colours, the poinsettia takes on a variety of guises and is an assured match for any interior style.
For example, with the stars creatively arranged in test tubes along with decorative accessories and seasonal flowers, you will have a truly marvellous decoration that will grab the attention of all your Christmas guests. A homely charm emanates from single poinsettia stems in fine china cups, grouped on a table or on the sideboard. Arranged as a centre-piece on your dining table, the radiant bracts are an irresistible eye-catcher. Whether presented as a single flower in a vase, as a flower arrangement, or as a bouquet, cut poinsettias will delight you with an amazing durability that very few cut flowers can equal: They will endure around two weeks with their bracts in full colour, even in heated rooms, and create a festive atmosphere throughout. Typical for a spurge plant, the cut surfaces of the Christmas Star ooze a characteristic milky sap. For the longest possible life, it is important to stop sap loss after you cut the stems. For this purpose, the stems should be cut at a 45° angle, dipped for about five seconds in hot water at 60°C, and then placed in the vase containing cold water and an anti-staling agent.

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