Why decorate with poinsettias?

Christmas is associated with a number of traditions including gift giving and various delicious foods. It is also considered tradition to decorate your home with a Christmas tree, wreaths, garlands, festive lights and poinsettias. While we are quick to associate the poinsettia with the holidays, many people don’t actually know why. Here are some reasons why we include these plants in our festive décor.

According to the Aztecs

The Aztecs did not refer to these plants as poinsettias. Instead, they used the name ‘Cuetlaxochitl’. This can be translated to mean ‘mortal flower perishes like all things pure’. These plants had many uses from clothing dye to curing various ailments. The red colour of the poinsettia was associated with wholesomeness and this is why it was often included in many religious rituals and ceremonies.

Mexican legend

There is also a popular Mexican legend associated with the poinsettia. Apparently, a poor girl wanted to offer Jesus a fancy and impressive gift on Christmas Eve. She could not afford to buy one but, thanks to the guidance of an angel, she was told that even the most humble gift is perfect if it is given with love. Upon the instructions of the angel, the girl picked some weeds and took them to church. On the way, the weeds turned into the most beautiful red poinsettias.

Festive colour

Even if you don’t believe in myth or legend, the colour of poinsettias is often enough for most people. While many people associate these plants with the colour red, there are also white varieties available. Both varieties are equally festive and they look particularly lovely when you arrange both white and red varieties around the base of your Christmas tree.

Whether you want to decorate your own home this Christmas or you are looking for the perfect festive gift, you can never go wrong with Poinsettias. These plants are fantastic for the holidays and, since they perish upon the arrival of spring, you don’t have to worry about tending to them for years. You can simply buy fresh ones next year instead.