New in the Nursery: Holiday Favorites
Though the Christmas tree takes center stage this time of year, holiday plants from mistletoe and holly to poinsettias and forced bulbs are equally indispensable for festive living décor. The terrain greenhouse is stocked with blooms, ready to add a last-minute touch of color to a holiday tabletop, doorway, or windowsill. Read on to learn about four plants that are making our nursery merry this season.
Poinsettia: Native to Mexico's tropical forests, the poinsettia is named for US Minister to Mexico Joel Roberts Poinsett, who brought the plant home from his post in 1825. Thanks to its combination of deep red blooms and green foliage, the classic poinsettia has been a popular Christmas plant since the early 20th century; this year, we're adding some fresh colors into the mix. Large blooms in a pale, peachy hue make our "Cinnamon Pink" poinsettia an unexpected pick that we love to pair with white or deep green. With eye-catching salmon petals edged in cream that stand out against its dark foliage, the smaller "Marble" variety adds another hue beyond traditional red. If kept in a frost-free environment with good morning sun and shade during the hottest parts of the day, poinsettias can continue to grow once the holiday season is over.
Mediterranean Cypress: For those in need of a petite tree this year, our pick is a burlap-wrapped Mediterranean cypress that can be planted after the holidays. Native to Mediterranean countries from Italy to northern Africa, these dark evergreens are remarkably long-lived. Cypress trees can grow for millennia; the oldest known specimen is an Iranian tree estimated to be 4,000 years old. Easy to cultivate as ornamental trees thanks to their naturally narrow, stately shape, cypress can grow in a wide variety of climates beyond the Mediterranean.
Amaryllis: One of our favorite winter bulbs, amaryllis add a welcome splash of holiday color with eye-catching blooms perched atop their narrow stalks. These South African natives come in countless hues, but our Christmas favorite is the classic red seen above. Perfect for beginning gardeners, amaryllis are one of the easiest winter bulbs to force. With proper care, these hardy bulbs will bloom year after year.
Paperwhites: Native to the Mediterranean, paperwhites are another easy-to-force bulb for the holidays. We love offsetting the season's bright colors with their crisp, snowy blooms, which grow in bunches atop tall stems. Strongly fragrant, paperwhites also freshen up a winter home. Paperwhites are happy to join you for a holiday drink-- a diluted solution of vodka and water stunts stem growth without reducing bloom size, which keeps the stalks from drooping due to top-heavy flowers.
Throughout the season, our plant team highlights their freshest additions to the garden with New in the Nursery. Check in at your local store to take home these newly-arrived greens.