Plants are an enduring gift, they are a physical memory of kindness that can last for many years to come. At Christmas time the seasonal blooms in radiant reds and purest white mix with delicate foliage to create the perfect yuletide present.
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A variety of colorful plants bloom and thrive around Christmas. Two of the most popular Christmas plants, the poinsettia and the Christmas cactus, make ideal gifts and can also bring beauty to the indoors during the holidays. But given the proper care, Christmas plants can last for many years.
Poinsettia: Serenata's poinseittas come in a variety of colors. Once the leaves being to wilt and drop, water the plant less frequently. The plants should be moved to a sunny location indoors that is away from drafts. These delicate plants thrive at approximately 70 degrees. In the early spring, it is wise to plant the poinsettia in a bigger pot. Prune the stalks, making it 2 to 4 inches tall. Then start watering the plant when the top soil feels dry. Once the plant begins to show new growth, fertilize it twice a month. In October, move the plant to a dark closet for 14 hours a day. The rest of the day it enjoys full sun. This will force poinsettia to bloom.
Christmas Cactus: This tropical beauty blooms in mid-December. After the flower has wilted, the plant should be watered less and moved to a cool room. The cactus does not like freezing temperatures or artificial light at night. Around March, move these plants to slightly larger pots. Pruning is allowed during the early growing season. Like most tropical plants, they require regular watering. In the fall, keep the room near 50 degrees and water less frequently. This will force the Christmas cactus to bloom. They like indirect light during the daytime. And, like the poinsettia, these Christmas plants require approximately 14 hours of complete darkness every night. Blooming may be disrupted if the plant is kept in a drafty location. Apply liquid fertilizer around the first of November.