Apparently, it is National Poinsettia Day in the United States. I don’t have a poinsettia this year, although I love them. It’s been so cold here that transporting one from the garden centre to home might completely do it in before I even had a chance to enjoy it. Arctic air masses that lounge around for days and days on end are not fun for anyone, and especially not if you’re from the tropics, as this plant is. Which is also perhaps why it is not National Poinsettia Day here in Canada – we’ve established that temperatures in the minus mid-to-high twenties (that’s Celsius!) are not ideal for such a celebration. Really, for any celebration. Except one involving hot chocolate and Irish cream and a warm fireplace.
Even if we don’t have a special day to honour poinsettias here in the frozen north, I can still share a fascinating bit of information: did you know that the dense, multi-branching habit and stunted growth of our holiday poinsettias results from infection by a type of pathogen? This article has more information about how it works.* And here is another for further perusal. Enjoy the reads – I’m off to petition the government to make National Hot Chocolate and Irish Cream and Warm Fireplace Day a reality.
Are poinsettias part of your holiday celebrations? What colour is your favourite? And have you ever seen a poinsettia in tree form? (I haven’t).
*UPDATED: I managed to track down a photo of a “wild” poinsettia, as the photo in the first link isn’t accurate – take a look here.