Holiday Plants: 5 Plants That Say “Holiday Season” and How to Care for Them
Holiday gardening tends to revolve around the same handful of plants. So, if you don’t already have any or all of these five holiday plants, now is a good time to get them:
The whiteness of the paper
Bulbs of members of the daffodil family are pre-chilled so they can be planted now and produce flowers in one to six weeks. If you find them on sale, definitely buy as many as you can. The only caveat is that some family members may object to the incredibly sweet scent of their flowers.
While you can grow these bulbs by placing their bases in a little water, it is best to plant them in a shallow pot of soil. It doesn’t need a lot of water and will do well if you get the best light you can have. If your buds, you are guaranteed flowers, at least the first year. People usually throw them away when they are finished, because they are unlikely to flower again.
Poinsettias, of course, are on sale in all kinds of places this time of year. Many of us buy them, keep them for the next few weeks and then throw them away. The trick is to keep them alive for the holiday season.
This first requires bringing the plant indoors with minimal exposure to cold air. If you live in a cold climate, consider warming up the car before moving it. Once back home, plants should not be exposed to drafts from doorways or windows. Place it in a location where daytime temperatures range between 65 and 75 degrees, and 60 degrees is the ideal temperature at night.
Poinsettias should never be kept in water, so if you want to keep the decorative paper that comes with a lot of them, cut a hole in it to let the water out.
These are also their gardening activities. Make sure to keep your tree in plenty of water and pay close attention to safety rules if you use lights. After Christmas, find a place that will chop down your tree and recycle it, or place it in the back corner of your garden as a bird cover.
These are the easiest and most gorgeous bulbs you can buy, and they produce the largest flowers you’ll ever likely grow. They are usually sold with the pot and soil, and all you have to do is make sure you plant them so that the top third of the bulb is above the soil line.
Keep the plant growing during the summer. Then place it in a cool, dark place until it goes dormant, to be brought out again next holiday season for flowering.
The Christmas cactus, Schlumbergeras, is another gorgeous plant that blooms during the midwinter holidays. They will live for dozens of holiday seasons (some passed down from generation to generation) and thrive every year if exposed to shortening days. It is easy to root cuttings with just one leaf, so it is not uncommon for a copy of the same plant to be in more than one family member’s home.
Christmas cactus does best in bright light. When your Christmas cactus is in bloom, you should only water your Christmas cactus when the soil is dry. Flowers will drop often when too much water is used, so this is one of those times when too dry is better than too wet.
The rest of the year, water the pot by soaking it when the topsoil dries. Next fall, give your home natural light and keep it cool near a window, and it will bloom again.