Sunday, November 29, 2009

Let Me Show You A Little Secret-Met Monday


After a very busy four days, I'm finally able to sit down and write a few things. I decided that I would join Susan @ Between Naps on the Porch for my first Met Monday. Please check out the other blog links, you will be amazed at how talented some of our blog friends are. What I am doing barely qualifies, but it is transforming something to something "better"!

I have a love/hate relationship with poinsettias. I got married 3 days after Christmas, a long, long time ago. My bridesmaids carried pink poinsettias, so they are very special to me. What I've never really enjoyed is the "typical" potted poinsettia. It always reminds me of something I would have taken my grandmother or my piano teacher. I've mentioned before that I used to help a good friend who was a florist on holidays. I learned a little secret about poinsettias that I have been using ever since. Now, I love the way they look!




It all starts with a basic poinsettia plant. This one came from our local farm store for $5.99, it had 5 huge blooms. Any color will do, or it is beautiful if you mix the colors.

The next thing you need is a vase. I like to use something in the bottom of mine. These are glass stones with just a hint of green to them. My vase was about 10 inches. It could easily have been larger, but I didn't want much height for what I was doing.

I suggest you put down newspaper before you continue. I didn't this time and I had a bit of a mess to clean up. Cut the blooms off of the plant down near the base so that you have a bloom on a long stem. Poinsettias have a milky sap that really isn't poisonous, but don't eat it anyway! The sap will drip where the stem is cut and anywhere you strip a leaf off. I remove most of the bottom leaves from each stem.


Now the important step. Using a lighter or a match, torch the cut part of the stem for a few seconds. The sap will bubble and the stem may even blacken a little. This seals the stem.

Arrange the blooms in your vase, just as you would any other cut flower. Let the vase sit on the newspaper for a while until the sap stops running from the leaf cuts.

My blooms were so large, I really should have gone with a taller vase. Seeing the pictures, I may change that. The poinsettias will stay fresh in water for several days as long as you have the stem sealed. We used to take all of the blooms that would break off the various colors of plants when we unpacked them and make big bouquets with all the colors. It was gorgeous and makes a wonderful, unusual and inexpensive centerpiece for your Christmas table. This isn't the best picture...but, it does introduce you to our very spoiled "child" of the house. She is 13 1/2 and still going strong. You also get a peek at the tree. There will be more about it coming soon. In this picture it looks as if it only has 2 ornaments!




20 comments:

Jenglamgirl said...

BEAUTIFUL... WAY TO GO!

Blondie's Journal said...

What a lovely idea, Sue! You can't buy a vaseful of flowers for much less!! Thanks for the tips!

xoxo
Jane

Natasha said...

What a beautifully festive arrangement! I love the peeking pooch in the background too!
Best wishes, Natasha.

dee dee said...

Sue,
What a fun idea... I've never thought of taking the plant and making it into an arrangement! How beautiful! Looking forward to seeing your tree and your sweet puppy!
Dee Dee

Jeanette said...

I never thought of that either. And a bargain to boot. Thanks for the clever idea!

ChaiLatte said...

Love this idea, Sue- and your spoiled child in the background! lol... too cute!

nannykim/spindlecottage said...

Hmmm, I usually don't like them much unless they are in gigantic masses which of course I can't do in my home...so this is a nice idea. We once had a lady in the nursing home that ate some of the leaves and she swelled up badly (well, her face did...I can't remember about the rest). I wonder how the tradition started anyways?

xinex said...

Great idea, Sue. Thanks for sharing it. I like what I see of your tree....Christine

In Three Rivers, Michigan said...

OH, I have never thought of using poinsettias as a cut flower - what a good idea, especially with the tips about sealing the cut ends. I'll try it, thanks. In my hometown they grow up the sides of buildings, some old poinsettia bushes are three stories tall.
Three Rivers Daily Photo

Yvonne @ StoneGable said...

Hi Sue, Great idea, very pretty arrangement.
I am a bit jealous ( with love) that you have all of your Christmas decorations up! Good for you- want to come over to my house and help me?
You asked what I am speaking about- I am doing a year long series at a Church on the Character of God. I speak once a month. This month I am speaking on God's Character of Omnipresent, Omniscience, Omnipotent and Unsearchable. No light topics! I could use your prayers.

By The Way- I love pink poinsettias!
Yvonne

Rettabug said...

Sue, this is a very helpful tip & one that I've never heard of before. Thanks for sharing it & thanks too for stopping & leaving such nice comments on my mirror move. I'd LOVE to see a picture of your mirror!!

fondly,
Rett

p.s. Cute poochie!!!!

dee dee said...

Sue,
In response to your question about feathers... I made this tree maybe two years ago (I'm getting old and everything runs together!) I bought Kid/craft feathers. I'll try to go to Michaels and take a photo of the package.
Your home is looking great! We only have the outside done and still need to do the inside, ahhh this weeks project.... Dee Dee

Coralie Cederna Johnson said...

While reading this post, I was envisioning your wedding with those lovely pink poinsettias! How beautiful and perfect for a holiday wedding! Thanks for sharing these tips! Have a great day! Coralie

Chrissy said...

What a good idea "MARTHA"...oops I mean Sue!!! Hope your weekend was a good one,Chrissy

sweetpicklesandchocolate said...

Beautiful idea! I hope you had a wonderful Thanksgiving and had a chance to finish your Christmas decorations!

Dena

Pat @ Mille Fiori Favoriti said...

Hi Sue!
This is a nice way to display poinsettias..thanks for the tips!
It's nice to meet you and I enjoyed looking through your blog! I felt the same way a you did as my husband took Thanksgiving week off and I could hardly get online to read blogs...lol.
Thanks for entering my Christmas teapot give away!

Tammy@InStitches said...

I'll have to try that, it's pretty !

Life Laugh Latte said...

Love that idea. I would have never thought to torch the bottom. The top of your tree is magnificent. Please take a closeup picture and tell us how you did it. LOVELY! I bought a cinnamon broom for $3 at Trader Joes yesterday, and my whole livingroom smells amazing. Go and buy one NOW if you live close to a TJ. Holly

nannykim said...

Hey, just had to tell you that this idea was in one of the magazines I got this week!!

Stephanie @ A Fine House said...

Great idea! I love white pointsettias. Unfortunately I dont' bring them into the home because they are poisonous to my kitties. (and they will eat at them if given the chance).