Its scientific name is Euphorbia pulcherrima , although most of us know it as Poinsettia, poinsettia, Christmas plant or Poinsettia . It is a very characteristic plant, which has become a Christmas tradition in a large number of countries. Its success is due to the large and showy bracts of its flowers, bright red (although there are also Christmas plants of other colors such as, for example, burgundy, white, salmon or pink), which grow in winter, usually before Christmas, and have turned it into a gift classic of these dates to give life and color to the home at a time when the vast majority of plants are in a vegetative state. Unfortunately, many let their poinsettia or Christmas flower die after flowering. Maintaining it is not only possible, but easier than many believe: you just have to attend to your main care. In addition, one of these necessary cares, pruning, allows us to multiply the poinsettia by the most effective and simple of methods: cutting.
When to make poinsettia cuttings
The best time to cut poinsettia is when we can do it after flowering so that it survives until the following season.
This generally occurs around February , although it depends on the specific conditions of the plant and the climate. After flowering, when the flowers and their bracts dry up, the poinsettia needs to be pruned sharply to prepare it for later sprouting. When pruning, we will select the most suitable branches to grow one or more cuttings, thus achieving them without damaging the plant or weakening it further.
How to make poinsettia cuttings step by step
These are the steps to make poinsettia cuttings and reproduce it:
- The first thing, as always, will be to prepare the pruning tools . Choose a sharp knife or scissors and sterilize them properly with alcohol or a specific solution. As the latex of poinsettias is potentially irritating, as is the case with all plants in the Euphorbia family, it is recommended that you wear plastic gloves or gardening to avoid skin discomfort.
- Pruning the poinsettia begins, as long as its flowers and bracts have dried after flowering. Prune all shoots where there were or still are some drying out and leave about a third of the stems with some knots in them, although you can also pinch the poinsettia to control its growth and regrowth in the next season.
- After pruning, it is highly recommended to seal the cuts with paste , so that the plant is much more protected from diseases and dangers. You can prepare your own healing paste for very little money if you prepare it with candle wax and a little fungicide powder, which can be bought in any specialized place.
- Heat the candle very slowly until it melts and add the fungicide, then stir until the mixture is equal. Take advantage while it is still liquid to spread the paste through the cuts, with the help of a brush or other similar tool. Once it solidifies again, the paste will cover the wound completely, protecting the plant from pests and diseases.
- After this, we can move on to transplanting the selected cuttings. It is convenient to use a flower stalk, cut from as low as possible, to which the upper part with the flower that will be drying must be removed. It is also advisable to cut your leaves in half if you still have them.
- At this point, you could directly plant your cutting in a container with the appropriate substrate, but if you put it in water with rooting agent you will maximize your chances of rooting the poinsettia cuttings . Again, you can use your own homemade lentil or cinnamon based rooting agent.
- After the rooting treatment, plant the cutting in a small container with a substrate made of coconut fiber , worm castings , peat and perlite . Keep it moist but always without waterlogging and give the new plant some indirect light. If all goes well, in a few weeks it will start to sprout again.
After learning about this method of propagation of the poinsettia or poinsettia , we talk about the basic care of the poinsettia :
- Light: luminous area but of indirect incidence. Next to a window, protected by a curtain that filters the sun’s rays.
- Location: safe from drafts and from heaters or other heat sources.
- Humidity: needs some ambient humidity. It may be necessary to lightly spray its green leaves.
- Irrigation: by immersion or from the dish, only when the substrate dries and without wetting the plant. Approximately every 3 days.
- Pruning: necessary after flowering.
- Compost: in autumn and spring to help with flowering and sprouting you can use homemade compost for the poinsettia.