How To Keep Poinsettias Alive
Keeping your holiday poinsettias alive isn't easy. But with a little TLC, you can do it. Here are step by step instructions.
- Continue to water your poinsettia, keeping the soil moist, but not wet, at all times. Keep the plant away from drafts caused by opening doors or heater vents.
- Set the poinsettia outdoors once night temperatures average 55 degrees or above.
- Transplant the poinsettia into a larger pot. Use fast-draining potting soil rich in organic matter.Cut the poinsettia back to about 8 inches in height in late March or early April. By the end of May you should see vigorous new growth.
- Prune during the summer to keep the plant bushy and compact. Do not prune after September 1.
- Keep the plant in indirect light or filtered sun.
- Fertilize every 2 to 3 weeks with a complete fertilizer.
- Move the plant into a closet each night, starting in October, for 14 hours, making sure it receives no light at all; move it into the light each morning for a maximum of 10 hours. Poinsettias bloom only when they experience long nights.
- Continue this procedure every day for 10 weeks and you can have poinsettia blossoms for next Christmas.