It is that time of year when you will see those Christmas plants sprouting up in every nook and corner. Sorry for the pun, but it fits in so nicely.
Before you buy them for your friends and family, let me help you by sharing some really good choices.
Poinsettia: These are traditional Christmas plants and many stores will have an abundance of these in all colors and sizes. Once the Red Poinsettias were almost the only ones you could find. Today due to breeding the plants, you have the Traditional Red, Red with White edges, Red with White splotches, White with Red Centers, some Red and White that look like candy canes and so many more. These plants are easy to care for and make a wonderful Hostess Gift or smaller ones can be used on your Christmas table. Water them regularly and keep them out of cold drafts and your Christmas Poinsettia will last until February or longer.
Cyclamen: All cyclamen come from a “corm” type plant. These plants don’t like to be drowned in water. Rather they of all plants would rather drink their water from the saucer or bowl that they are resting in. Corms tend to rot if they are soaked all the time and you will find you cyclamen very unhappy, if that is the way you are treating it. Water it once a week with room temperature water and let the roots drink up the water in the bowl and then after an hour remove the standing water if there is any. Let it dry out
between watering. It will let you know when it is thirsty, as the leaves will start to droop. When this happens put some more water into the holding saucer and let it drink again.
Cyclamen come in a whole range of colors, from red, white, to pink with frilly edges, or white with a different color on the edges and almost every shade of pink or purple that you can imagine. They are beautiful, long lived plants that if taken care of will last right until summer.
Christmas Cactus: Another favorite plant that can be found all over during the Holidays is Christmas Cactus. This plant is a natural for blooming during the Christmas Holidays as it naturally needs a drop in temperatures to encourage it to bloom. This cactus doesn’t have spines or prickles, so makes a really nice plant for the holidays. It comes in shades of red/orange or pink, white, purple or white with pink edges. It is pretty and again will do well with regular watering. It will last if taken care of until the spring and you might even get another blooming period at Easter time. How wonderful is that?
Amaryllis: These bulbs become very popular right about now. They are wonderful gifts for those who know about gardening and for those who do not. Why? Well, the simple answer is that for the first time growing, everything it needs is in the bulb. Like tulips, these plants have everything they need stored in their large bulbs. Planted in a pot with drainage holes and good potting soil, will make these bulbs come to life within a few weeks. That’s why they are a great gift for a hostess. She can plant them in the weeks leading up to Christmas and by the time the 25th rolls around, it should be ready to bloom! The only need that these bulbs have is for some water and to be turned so that the stalk with flowers on it will remain relatively straight up. If you don’t turn the pot, the stalk will start to bend toward the light. Amaryllis, come in red, pink, white, and red with white markings. The most popular color is the red, because it is so striking. Follow the instructions given with the bulb if you would like to try to keep it flowering year after year.
Ivy: There are so many ivy type plants that are so pretty and easy to grow. At this time of year you will find them trained onto trellises that make them look like Christmas wreathes. Add a great big red bow and you have a lovely centerpiece or side table decoration. These are the least fussy plants you can get and they do a great job at staying green and healthy for a long time. Just water and they will grow. After Christmas is over, they are a lovely houseplant that will help keep the air in your home fresh. It doesn’t get any better than that!
Add some beautiful Pots and you have a Gardener’s Delight for Christmas.