Jolly Lane Greenhouse shares how to keep your poinsettia alive through the holidays
RAPID CITY, S.D. – While Christmas trees might be the most obvious foliage that comes to mind, there are a few other plants that are popular this time of year. Tim Sime, owner of Jolly Lane Greenhouse, shared a few tips on how to care for plants this holiday season. Many of these plants can be purchased at various stores in Rapid City.
The plants — poinsettias, Christmas cacti, paperwhites and amaryllises — aren’t too difficult to take care of if you follow these tips.
Next to Christmas trees, poinsettias are probably the most popular plant to buy during the December holidays and they are sold almost anywhere.
To take care of poinsettias, you should:
- Place the plant in moderate to a higher light level is preferred for poinsettias. Sime says that while they’re in bloom it isn’t as critical but a bright spot would be best.
- Water them as needed and do NOT over water them.
“Sometimes they’re in a foil pot cover or something, you want to make sure that any excess moisture can get out of there and that it wouldn’t set in a tray or saucer that would have excessive moisture,” Sime said.
- Keep them at room temperature.
- Keep them away from heat vents or a door that’s opened often so it gets cold.
“Regarding the poinsettia, the fact that so many people think they’re poisonous because of the latex. It’s a Euphorbia plant,” Sime said. “That’s a myth. It’s been proven that they’re not toxic or poisonous to humans or animals. Sometimes I get customers that are all concerned about that, but that’s not true.”
Christmas cacti are fairly popular according to Sime. They aren’t as popular as poinsettias “but, that’s to be understood.”
To take care of a Christmas cactus:
- They should be kept at room temperature with them being at blooming cycle during this season.
- A brighter, indirect light location is Sime’s recommendation as well.
- For watering them, they don’t need to be too wet and the soil moisture should be kept on the dryer side.
To take care of Paperwhites:
- You would plant in soil or place them in a vase with water.
- The should do the best when kept in moderate to higher light levels.
- They bloom in about four to six weeks and most people throw them out after they bloom.
“They’re kind of a one shot thing in the sense when they bloom, then they’re kind of done,” Sime said. “That particular type of bulb is pretty much expended itself and you wouldn’t really keep it to reutilize in the future.”
Much like paperwhites, these flowers are blubs as well.
- After buying, you should pot them in order to bloom for the holiday season.
- Sime says that it can take four to seven weeks for them to bloom.
“So if you were planting one today, it is possible or likely that it wouldn’t be blooming for Christmas, but it will still bloom through the winter,” he said.
- These can bloom again next holiday season if you put them in a dark, cool place, allowing the flower to go dormant.