As Christmas approaches and the cooler weather starts to set in, many of us living in South Texas start the process of decorating our homes for the holidays. One of the most common things you will see people using to make their home festive for the holidays is the use of Poinsettia flowers.

The Poinsettia was first introduced to the United States in 1828 by Dr. Joel Roberts Poinsett, who at the time was the U.S Ambassador to Mexico. When Dr. Poinsett was not dealing with foreign affairs, he also enjoyed dabbling in Botany which led him on a hike in Southern Mexico where he stumbled upon the flower, and brought it back to his home in South Carolina.

The Poinsettia did not initially catch on very well with consumers who disregarded the flower as a weed, but now annual sales reach on average of 34 million Poinsettias sold during the Christmas season. The Poinsettia has become so popular in fact that December 12th has been declared National Poinsettia Day. While red is the most popular shade of the Poinsettia, it also comes in hues of salmon, yellow, cream, and white. The Poinsettia in its native country of Mexico is known as “Flores de Noche Buena” meaning “flowers of the Holy Night”. Many also think of the flower as a symbol of the Star of Bethlehem.