Contrary to popular opinion, poinsettias do not have to be just a holiday decoration. With a little attention, your poinsettia can live much longer, and with a little understanding about what makes them thrive, they can stay beautiful well past the holidays.

Caring for a poinsettia starts with choosing the healthiest plant you can find, and protecting it on the journey home. Once home, place it in a well-lit location away from icy windowpanes and drafts.

To keep those red or white flowers, it’s best to move it to a dark location each night, so they can get 12 hours of darkness each day. When the soil feels dry to the touch, soak it thoroughly with water in the sink and allow the water to drain before placing it back in its spot. Later in the year, you can prune and replant it in a larger pot.

Come next year, you can enjoy your beautiful poinsettia for another holiday season.

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