Monthly Archives: November 2009

Poinsettias – the Christmas flower

In their natural state, poinsettias grow in South America, south of the Equator, which is one of the reasons why this lovely flower crops up at Christmas. Down there, it’s the middle of summer; up in the northern hemisphere it’s a relief to see anything growing, let alone a beautiful poinsettia.

iStock_000001040766XSmall

The first poinsettias (Euphorbia pulcherrima) were introduced to the USA by Joel Roberts Poinsett in 1828, and it’s from him that they got their name.  In the United States, December 12 is National Poinsettia Day.

The most common poinsettias are a luxurious, velvet red, but they come in a variety of shades, solid colors and variegated. Pure cream poinsettias are often sold covered with glitter to make them even more festive, but in their natural state, set against their pink and red cousins, their bright and striking leaves are attractive enough.

In traditional cultures, poinsettia flowers were used to make red dye and were also used in medicine. Their association with Christmas began in Mexico in the 1500s, however. Legend has it that there once was a  girl who could not provide a gift for Jesus’ birthday. An angel inspired her to gather weeds and place those in front of the altar instead. The weeds transformed miraculously into red poinsettia blossoms.

North of the Equator, poinsettias are usually best kept indoors or in a green house. With care, and warm climates, they can be cultivated outdoors. Poinsettias are subtropical plants, so such places are rare in the USA. But with care and understanding, poinsettias can be coaxed to last beyond the holiday season, taking their blessing into January and beyond.

Poinsettias make a perfect addition to your holiday decorations. We at daFlores can deliver them to your doorstep. Just pick out the flowers you want, and we will take care of the rest.  daFlores.com offers same-day International Flower Delivery.

HOLIDAY DECORATIONS

The holidays are coming, and for many of us it’s a bitterly cold time with nothing much of anything growing in the gardens. So what better solution than to fill your home with holiday decorations made from holly, mistletoe and other winter greenery? Bright red berries and sweet delicate mistletoe set the scene for an unforgettable family celebration. Browse the many choices at daFlores and you’ll have everything arranged in no time.

product_big_0312

Start with your front door. Guests will be coming and going all season, so greet them with a fresh wreath on your door.  Christmas Wreaths are traditionally made from holiday foliage but can have dried or fresh Christmas flowers woven through as well. Coupled with some glittering baubles there’s no more welcoming way to start a pleasant visit!

Bring your guests inside, and sit them down at your kitchen table. There, you can put a floral centerpiece with a candle and serve up mulled wine and hot drinks. Larger, more elaborate centerpieces can set the scene for your holiday dinners and parties, but a small one in the kitchen makes a lovely, welcoming greeting and helps put you in the mood, too.

Don’t forget your house. A beautiful Christmas tree covered in decorations and lights is part of what makes the season so special. You might pick a different theme each year, or simply cover the tree in mementos of your travels or life. Don’t forget to let the children put their own mark on the tree by making their own ornaments; they’ll treasure these memories and carry them forward into the future.

Garlands strung up make the house festive and welcoming, and tastefully done will draw comments and delight. Or you can set up baskets full of flower arrangements and seasonal poinsettias to add color and variety to the season. There are numerous ways you can dress up your home for the holidays, but always remember: It’s the love with which you decorate that counts the most!