Q:

How do you care for poinsettias in your home?

A:

Quick Answer

Maintain the proper water, light and temperature when caring for poinsettias in the home. Encouraging the plant to flower the second year requires careful preparation.

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How do you care for poinsettias in your home?
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Full Answer

Poinsettias that become too dry often drop their leaves permanently. Check the moisture level frequently. If the plant begins to wilt and the soil is dry, add water to the pot, wait 20 minutes and water the plant again. If water empties out of the drainage hole in the pot, discard it, and do not leave the pot sitting in water.

Poinsettias are light-loving plants. Provide the light they need by placing the pot in a southerly, westerly or easterly window in the Northern Hemisphere. Do not allow the leaves of the plant to touch the glass as the cold temperature can damage them.

Keep the temperature in the room where the poinsettias are located between 65 and 70 degrees Fahrenheit during the day. Move the plants to a cooler location at night. Maintain a minimum temperature of 60 degrees Fahrenheit to prevent root rot.

Poinsettias rebloom about 10 weeks after the days shorten to 12 hours or less of daylight. Force them to rebloom by keeping them in complete darkness between 5 p.m. to 8 a.m. and in a sunny window during the day. Fertilize the plant until blooms appear.

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