Keep Your Poinsettia After Christmas

poinsettiasIt is possible to keep your poinsettia alive into the Spring season when it can flower again for Christmas holidays the next year.

Of course, flower is the wrong word when dealing with poinsettias (Euphorbia pulcherrima, from the spurge plant family). They don’t have flower petals. Those red leaves are called bracts. The red leaves are just more leaves on the planet but they turn red as they grow from the top. The actual ‘flower’ is that knobby looking part in the centre of the plant. This is why poinsettias are propagated through grafting in commercial nurseries.

I’ve never tried growing one from seed either. I just do my best to keep my live plants going from year to year. I did have one which I kept for several years. It finally caught a white fungus during one of my moves from place to place. It couldn’t be saved that year.

The plant needs 12 hours of daylight followed by 12 hours of darkness in order to bloom – get the leaves to turn red. With some fussing, you can induce your poinsettia to bloom red again after the holiday season when the leaves usually begin to drop off and leave you with a pretty bare and barren looking plant.

How to Get Your Poinsettia to Grow Again

Prune the plant. Take off the red leaves, if there are any left. After the last of the frost is gone from outside, take it out for some fresh air. Don’t rush to get it out there. The poinsettia is not hardy for being out in the northern climate. They are native to Central America and Mexico.

You can leave the poinsettia outside all Summer. It will grow and look much healthier than it has since Christmas. Bring the poinsettia indoors in the Autumn. It really does not want to catch a chill outside. Bring it in before the first frost. Place the poinsettia in a room which you can give it darkness (complete and uninterrupted) after sunset. The plant needs those long, dark periods for at least two months if you want to get the red leaves developing in time for Christmas. Any light during this stage will set it back.

If you only have dim light, not full dark, try putting a cardboard box over the poinsettia for those 12 hours of full dark it needs. Another idea, put a tomato cage in the plant pot and cover it with a cloth/ fabric tablecloth to block out the light. Don’t use plastic, or anything else which will cut off the air as well as the light. Don’t forget to uncover the plant at dawn so it can also get the full 12 hours of light it needs. We tend to have longer nights than days in the Autumn so it will need all the daylight you can give it too, the balance of light and darkness.

Keep the poinsettia on the dry side when it comes to watering. Set the pot on a few pebbles, marbles, beads, something which will make sure it is getting good drainage rather than holding excess water inside the pot. I also pot them with a few rocks at the bottom of the pot if I give them a new container, other than the one they came in from the store. The poinsettia likes moist soil but it does not like to be sitting in water or have water poured over it. The best thing is to let it be just a bit dry and then give it a soak in a bucket (or some other container) of water. Then take it out to drain out any extra water before you put it back where you have it growing.

Poinsettia Growing Links

Prompt for December 4 | Project Reverb

20/20: Hindsight is the one thing we never benefit from in the present.  Is there one moment you wish you could do over?

via Prompt for December 4 | Project Reverb.

No. I don’t want do overs of anything unless it’s a single great moment. Even then, things are always better in the moment than the second time around. You can’t have the same reaction twice, especially when you already know how things are going to end.

Do you read the end of a book while you are still reading it? Life is like that. At times we would like to know how it ends, do we accomplish everything, or anything? How do family and friends do with their own lives? So many questions to ask and yet having the answers leaves us without all those questions.

I think we need those surprises, questions and all those moments of suspense and even fear. If we had a book of our lives to read from how dull that would be. To already know how your every moment will be…. Wouldn’t that be sad to just be waiting around for things to happen instead of wondering what will happen next?

Maple Leaves in the Rain

I found this on a wallpaper site, in Russian. I’m assuming they were free to use – at least for personal use. I’m linking back to the site because there were a lot of great images there. This is one which I love. How can you not like maple leaves in the rain, especially with colours slightly more vibrant than they would be on the typical rainy day here in Ontario.  I’m adding it in a smaller size. Hopefully you can click on it and get the full size image. Full size was even better.

mapleleaves

You're Just too Good to be True

The song on my mind today…

You’re just too good to be true.
Can’t take my eyes off you.
You’d be like Heaven to touch.
I wanna hold you so much.
At long last love has arrived
And I thank God I’m alive.
You’re just too good to be true.
Can’t take my eyes off you.

Pardon the way that I stare.
There’s nothing else to compare.
The sight of you leaves me weak.
There are no words left to speak,
But if you feel like I feel,
Please let me know that it’s real.
You’re just too good to be true.
Can’t take my eyes off you.

I love you, baby,
And if it’s quite alright,
I need you, baby,
To warm a lonely night.
I love you, baby.
Trust in me when I say:
Oh, pretty baby,
Don’t bring me down, I pray.
Oh, pretty baby, now that I found you, stay
And let me love you, baby.
Let me love you.

You’re just too good to be true.
Can’t take my eyes off you.
You’d be like Heaven to touch.
I wanna hold you so much.
At long last love has arrived
And I thank God I’m alive.
You’re just too good to be true.
Can’t take my eyes off you.

I love you, baby,
And if it’s quite alright,
I need you, baby,
To warm a lonely night.
I love you, baby.
Trust in me when I say:
Oh, pretty baby,
Don’t bring me down, I pray.
Oh, pretty baby, now that I found you, stay..

Spicy Warm Pineapple Watermelon Salad Recipe : Robert Irvine : Food Network

Spicy Warm Pineapple Watermelon Salad Recipe : Robert Irvine : Food Network

Ingredients
1 red onion, diced
3 cloves garlic, chopped
1 tablespoon sugar
2 cups diced pineapple
1/2 cup medium watermelon chunks
1/2 cup rice wine vinegar
Salt
Chopped fresh mint leaves, for serving
Crumbled goat cheese, for serving
Directions
Saute the onion and garlic together over low heat, in a medium saucepan, being careful not to burn the garlic. Add the sugar and let it dissolve until almost caramelized. Stir in the pineapple, watermelon, and vinegar and allow to cook until the fruit is coated with the liquid in the pan, about 2 to 3 minutes. Season with salt, to taste, and serve with chopped mint and goat cheese.

I just saw this being made on the show. There were strawberries in it on the show. Maybe strawberries were substituted for pineapple. Too bad they don’t mention that. Anyway, it sounded good. I wouldn’t make it spicy but that’s my taste.

Find Your Name

I found the NameListings Network. A social network based on your first name.
From Behind the Name:

Laura

Usage: English, Spanish, Italian, Portuguese, Romanian, Finnish, Estonian, Hungarian, Polish, Slovene, Scandinavian, German, Dutch

Pronounced: LAWR-? (English), LOW-rah (Spanish, Italian, Polish, German, Dutch) [key]
Feminine form of the Late Latin name Laurus, which meant “laurel”. This meaning was favourable, since in ancient Rome the leaves of laurel trees were used to create victors’ garlands. The name was borne by the 9th-century Spanish martyr Saint Laura, who was a nun thrown into a vat of molten lead by the Moors. It was also the name of the subject of poems by the 14th-century Italian poet Petrarch.

As an English name, Laura has been used since the 13th century. A famous bearer was Laura Secord (1775-1868), a Canadian heroine during the War of 1812.