Gardener Lucy Warren talks about the annual poinsettia display at the San Diego Botanical Gardens in Balboa Park and offers a few tips for the non-gardeners of us.
When you say poinsettia, you say San Diego.
“It even started with Kate Sessions. She grew poinsettias on the hills in Mission Hills,” said horticulturist Lucy Warren with Friends of Balboa Park. “The ships would come in the hills and
they would see this beautiful bank of red on the hills.”
Sessions is known as the Mother of Balboa Park and her love for poinsettias can be seen this season in the Botanical Gardens.
San Diegans can see some of the new varieties of poinsettias at the 27th Annual Poinsettia Display. Holiday Special, Pink Poinsettia, County Quilt and Tapestry poinsettia plants are available for viewing now through New Year’s Day.
For those people who bought or received poinsettias as a gift this holiday, there is a way to keep the plant long after the holiday.
To keep the plant blooming, it’s important that you take the pot out of any foil lining in may have arrived in. Water the plant and let the water drain completely before putting it back in the foil. Keeping the plant from sitting in standing water will avoid the roots rotting.
Warren said if you want to keep the poinsettia blooming year to year, you’ll need to put the plant in complete darkness for at least 12 hours a day around October 1 to help stimulate the bloom in time for Christmas next year. You can use a room or a box to accomplish this.
As for how to pronounce the plant's name, Warren squashes any argument by saying emphatically "poin SET ee uh"