Happy National Poinsettia Day! Gardeners around the world celebrate our favourite Christmas flower each year on 12 December, paying tribute to this exotic beauty that for many encapsulates the essence of Christmas.
National Poinsettia Day
December 12 is the Dia de la Virgen in the plant’s native Mexico, where poinsettias have been used to celebrate Christmas since the 17th century and are known as La Flor de la Nochebuena, or Flower of the Holy Night.
Poinsettias were brought to the US by the botanist Joel Roberts Poinsett, who was serving as the US Ambassador to Mexico in 1828 when he spotted the vividly-coloured scarlet bracts of Euphorbia pulcherrima, as the plant is more properly known, by the side of the road and sent cuttings home.
There are over 100 varieties of poinsettia, some of which can grow up to 12 feet tall in the wild! They come in a huge range of colours: as well as traditional scarlet, you’ll find poinsettias with white, green, orange and purple bracts. They’re always a favourite here at the garden centre in Poynings, so pop in and take your pick. They’re popular gifts for family and friends, and look wonderful dotted around your home, so go on – treat yourself to a touch of instant festive spirit!