A small Mexican shrub with large showy scarlet bracts surrounding the small yellow flowers, popular as a houseplant at Christmas.
- Euphorbia (formerly Poinsettia) pulcherrima, family Euphorbiaceae.
- For most Americans poinsettias are like Douglas firs: You buy them for Christmas, and throw them out along with all that shredded wrapping paper.
- Lavender, rosemary and thyme gathered in thick clumps under the windows, with poinsettias, passionflower, marigolds, marguerites and hollyhocks growing wild in the borders.
- Cut off any colored bracts and prune the poinsettia to about 5 to 7 inches.
Mid 19th century: modern Latin, named after Joel R. Poinsett (1779–1851), American diplomat and amateur botanist.
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