Description and History Of Poinsettia
The Poinsettia or noche buena, is a species of the genus Euphorbia in the family of the spurge family (Euphorbiaceae). The Latin name is Euphorbia pulcherrima, “meaning”the most beautiful Euphorbia. ”
This plant which is during the Christmas Time very popular, is native to Central America and Mexico. In nature it grows shrub-like and can be up to 4 meters high. Joel Poinsett, the first U.S. Ambassador to Mexico, brought the first poinsettia about 200 years ago in the United States. He sent some samples to his home in Greenville, South Carolina for viewing. The historian and horticulturist William Prescott gave it the name “poinsettia” in 1836 to honor Joel Poinsett. However, the German immigrant family “Ecke” in California, which made the Poinsettia known as a Christmas Plant, offered it at first only as a cut flower. Only by breeding success, it is possible for the Poinsettia to deal as a pot plant.
The large mostly red leaves – called bracts – are not really flowers, but the littlegreen-yellow leaves in the center of the bracts. Because the flowers are very small and inconspicuous, the bracts ensure that insects are attracted.
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