poinsettia care in the winter

Asked October 29, 2013, 10:12 AM EDT

How do I care for an older poinsettia plant in the house in the winter? It is already dropping leaves & has only been in the house about 2 weeks. Thanks.

Cambria County Pennsylvania

1 Response

For maximum plant life, place your poinsettia near a sunny window or Some other well-lighted areas. Do not let any part of the plant touch cold window panes. Poinsettias are tropical plants and are usually grown at temperatures between 60 and 70 degrees F in greenhouses, so this temperature range in the home is best for long plant life. High temperatures will shorten the life of the blooms. Poinsettias do no[ tolerate warm or cold drafts so keep them away from radiators, air registers, and fans as well as open windows or doors. Place your poinsettia in a cooler room at night (55 to 60 degrees F is ideal) to extend the blooming time. Examine the soil daily and water only when it feels dry. Always water enough to soak the soil to the bottom of the pot and discard the excess water. If you don't water enough, the plant will wilt and the lower leaves will drop. If you water too much the lower leaves will yellow and then drop. If you keep your plant for several months, apply a soluble houseplant fertilizer, once or twice a month according to the manufacturers recommendations.