Wednesday, December 2, 2009
N.C. poinsettias brighten up the holidays. The poinsettia is a decorating staple for the winter holidays. The plant makes a beautiful addition to any event or household with a multitude of shades - red, pink, white and marble - that can match any décor. But many may not know that North Carolina is the second largest producer of poinsettias in the United States. “North Carolina produced about 4.6 million poinsettias in 2008 and generated cash receipts of $17.9 million,” said Agriculture Commissioner Steve Troxler. “Overall, floriculture contributes more than $207 million to our state’s economy, and poinsettias play an important role in that industry.” Poinsettias are grown in greenhouses across the state under specific climatic requirements. The plants must receive a balance of sunlight and darkness to produce quality plants for the holiday season. “In addition to being useful in your own holiday decorating, poinsettias make great gifts,” said Troxler. “You can purchase poinsettias at nurseries, farmers markets, garden centers, florists and even grocery stores.” Numerous informational events will take place across the state in the coming weeks with information for both growers and consumers. Homewood Nursery and Garden Center in Raleigh will host a poinsettia open house on Wednesday, Dec. 2, from 8:30 a.m. to 6 p.m. Mitchell’s Nursery and Greenhouse in King will host a poinsettia open house Sunday, Dec. 6, from 12:30 to 4:30 p.m. The N.C. State University National Poinsettia Trial Open House will be held at the Horticulture Field Lab next to the J.C. Raulston Arboretum on Wednesday Dec. 2, from 9 a.m. to 2 p.m. for growers, and for the public on Sunday, Dec. 6, from 1 to 5 p.m. For more information about any of the open house events or where to find locally grown poinsettias, go to www.ncflowers.org or www.ncfarmfresh.com.