Poinsettias in every color; even blue

Longtime readers of this blog will know that I have a love-hate relationship with poinsettias. I love them because they are one of the few plants that can bring some color into the house during these darkest days and because even if you do nothing else, a red poinsettia makes your house look holiday-ish. I sort of hate them because after Christmas I want them (and all the rest of my Christmas decorations) to just go away so I can get busy planning for spring (it's a sickness). And then I'm forced to do things like this or this.

Apparently poinsettias, like so many other plants, are a hybridizer's dream because there are certainly a variety of them to be found these days. The old days of red or white are long gone.

I swung by a local nursery last weekend and popped into their greenhouse to find a sea of poinsettias in almost every color.

A sea of poinsettias


In addition to the usual solid red, white and pink varieties, there were variations on red (burgundy) and the very dark-leaved on above. 

There was one that looked like it got in the way of one of my crazy spray-painting projects:
Red and white speckled poinsettia

This softly colored blush and cream one:


A darker, reversed version of that one with an almost coral color:
Salmon poinsettia


This one was a pinky red on the edges with a Pepto-Bismal pink center, but that's not what I liked about it: 
red with pink center ponsettia -- The Impatient Gardener


Take a closer look. Do you see the cool accidental variation on that plant? One bract was split right down the center with red on one half and white on the other. I hope some smart hybridizer figures out how to isolate and stabilize that because that would be a very cool looking poinsettia.
Half red leaf, half white leaf poinsettia -- The Impatient Gardener


And then we get the most hideous of the offerings. The dyed blue poinsettia. Let's just get this out in the world: no flower that is dyed blue is a good thing. Real blue flowers (Himalayan blue poppies and some delphiniums are the first that come to mind) are stunning treasures. This, not so much.
Blue poinsettia -- The Impatient Gardener


 My favorite of all the poinsettias I saw was this one, which manages to take just a tiny twist on the traditional with the variegated leaves.
Variegated leaf poinsettia -- The Impatient Gardener


Do you decorate with poinsettias? What do you do with them when the holidays are over? Are you a blatant plant killer like myself or are you overcome by guilt so that you actually keep the thing alive until spring? 

Want to test your knowledge about poinsettias? Take this little quiz on the favorite flower of the holiday season. I got one of them wrong. 

6 comments :

  1. That blue one is actually creepy! My fave is the salmon peachy color — not so Christmas-y,

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  2. I agree with you about the blue dyed flowers. I think this example of the poinsettia is the worst I've ever seen.

    What do I do with my poinsettias after Christmas. KILL THEM!!!! Like you, I can't wait for spring and the last thing I want in February is an old reminder of December. Looks like we have the same method - starve them to death. I usually put them in another room and try to forget about them. Funny, my husband must know this practice because I haven't had one given to me for a few years now.

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  3. Is it just me, or are there pots hanging from the ceiling?

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    1. Your eyes do not deceive you: There are indeed poinsettias in hanging baskets there. I can't imagine what the application of those is, but they must do well with them to have so many.

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  4. Oh, no, I love the blue ones!!! So pretty. But hate that they are artificially so. I found a site that claims there are naturally occurring blue ones, tho. Wonder if it's true. The blue ones would match with my blue house!

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