Last Updated on February 24, 2023 by Mattias
Affiliated with the plant species of the Euphorbiaceae spurge family, Poinsettia is a plant with vibrant red and green foliage. You mostly see this blooming plant in Christmas displays; thanks to its coloring, it is closely associated with the holiday season.
If you are a home gardener and wish to see it bloom through next Christmas, you must take excellent care of your plant, including a suitable watering schedule. Keep reading this article to find out how often to water poinsettia.
How Often To Water Poinsettia?
Watering your poinsettia plant once every week or ten days is recommended, but remember that sticking to one particular schedule is never beneficial. It can result in overwatering, so the better way would be to check the soil’s dryness daily and evaluate whether your plant needs water.
A good rule is always to remember that whenever you water your poinsettia, make it generous and give the soil a good soak.
Usually, a poinsettia plant only lasts 2-3 months, but with intense dedication and care, you can take your leafy friend to the next season. If you are looking for more than a standard answer to help you understand your plant’s watering needs, look below.
Some specific scenarios are listed below so you can learn how often to water poinsettia.
How Often To Water Poinsettia in summer?
Poinsettias bloom mid-winter, just around the holiday season, but their growing season technically starts when the plant begins putting out new tissue. This usually happens during summer when the temperature is 65-70 degrees.
When new growth begins, your plant’s watering needs to increase, and they need lots of water to support the leaves growth. It will also need more water in warmer months because of heat intensity and evaporation. Water will be dried out quickly, and your plant’s roots will not have enough to ensure healthy leaf growth.
It is highly recommended to let it sit in well-drained yet moist soil all the time during this period and keep checking the soil to see if it’s dry to the touch. If you are unclear, a simple tip is to place a tissue on the soil’s surface. If wet spots don’t appear, then feel free to rinse the plant thoroughly.
A good rule of thumb is to let the water run out freely from the drainage holes, and if your pot doesn’t have them, make sure to dry out the saucer/tray before putting your plant back.
How Often To Water Poinsettia in winter?
Most people get poinsettia around the holiday season, and if you are one of them, you must be unclear about how often to water poinsettia in winter. The first thing to remember about your poinsettia plant is that it goes into a state of dormancy in colder months, meaning that it is entirely self-sufficient and doesn’t need much attention from you.
Your plant won’t need much water during this period because its bloom has already happened, and it is not actively growing new leaves. Another reason would be the lack of heat and sun exposure. Since the evaporation will be low, little water will remain enough for your plant.
It is suggested to give your plant a deep soak once every 2-3 weeks and let the excess water drain out properly.
The best way is to keep a journal and track your watering schedule; this will reduce the chances of both overwatering and underwatering.
Can You Overwater a Poinsettia?
A common misconception is that poinsettia loves excessive water supply, but that’s certainly not the case. As a matter of fact, this plant is more likely to die from overwatering than from underwatering.
Too much water can cause the plant to develop a fungal disease called root rot. It will hinder the plant’s ability to absorb essential nutrients and water from the roots. Meanwhile, the roots themselves will drown and die from within.
If the soil is frequently saturated, the following signs will occur
- Wilted leaves
- Yellow leaves
- Soggy soil
- Soft stems
To rescue your plant, you’ll need to dry it out immediately and cut back on the water supply. It will be a good idea to let the plant relax. If the roots look damaged or darker, you’ll need to cut them with sharp scissors and repot the poinsettia in well-drained soil.
To avoid this from happening again, add a lot of drainage holes in your potting soil and make sure they don’t get clogged.
Can You Underwater a Poinsettia?
Poinsettia is a type of plant that is highly prone to stress. If it’s left in dry conditions or underwatered for a long time, the plant will go into distress and display the following signs.
- Premature leaves falling down
- Scarred leaves
- Wilted leaves
- Brick hard soil
You can revive your lifeless-looking plant by giving it a good soak. After showering it with a generous amount of water, it is recommended to let the plant relax and rehydrate itself. Once the roots have soaked up the water, the plant will start recovering independently.
Even after you are attentive to the plant’s watering needs, side effects may stay for a little while but don’t worry because they will fade on their own as well.
How To Know If Poinsettia Needs Water
Like other plants, you can check your poinsettia’s water needs in standard ways. Soil moisture is a pretty evident indication that will let you know when your plant is thirsty. You can check it by sticking your finger an inch deep in the soil or using a moisture meter.
Both ways are reliable and commonly used. As for the touch test, you’d want the soil to be dry before watering, and a numerical 1-2 on the moisture meter is a good sign to start watering.
Examining your pot’s weight can check whether the water hasn’t properly drained. Remember that a pot with wet soil will be noticeably heavier than one with dry soil.
Can You Mist a Poinsettia?
As a home gardener, you may already know that misting is an effective way to create a humid environment for your plant. You can occasionally spray the leaves and let water droplets do the rest. Higher moisture content will most certainly decrease your plant’s watering needs and keep its content longer.
If we talk about poinsettia, it is a plant that can survive in a dry environment but will thrive in high humidity and moisture.
Other ways to increase moisture
- You can also increase soil moisture by putting 6-10 ice cubes in your pot. Sounds strange. But don’t worry. This is a well-proven theory that will significantly aid your plant. The ice cubes will slowly melt into your plant’s container and soak the soil. This delicate process will slowly deliver essential water to the plant’s roots and keep them hydrated.
- Another way is to let your warmth-loving plant be in the presence of a humidifier. In case you don’t know, a humidifier is an appliance that artificially creates a humid environment in its surroundings. If you live in dry conditions and still want your poinsettia to thrive, you can just set one up near your poinsettia plant, and we guarantee that it will be much happier.
Caution: just because your plant loves humidity doesn’t mean that tender care isn’t required. Remember that too much humidity can cause the same effects as underwatering.
How To Water Poinsettia?
Now that we have covered how often to water poinsettia. Another common question arises: How exactly should you water this plant? Let’s find out.
You have probably kept your plant in a decorative pot indoors or transplanted it outside for warmth. The most common way to water your plant would be to use a watering can or a vessel. Whichever watering medium you choose, It is highly recommended to fill it with room temperature water, and remember that cold water can send your plant into shock.
As for the method, Start watering thoroughly from the top to the surface and ensure it’s a good soak. The water should reach the roots and soak in the soil.
An even better idea would be to remove your plant from its decorative pot cover and directly put it in the sink. Your poinsettia doesn’t necessarily need much water, but a generous amount should be used when it does.
Let the water reach the roots, wash away dust, hydrate the soil properly, and allow it to drain freely from the bottom.
For this very purpose, we recommend drainage holes in the soil.
After this process, let the soil dry out before you put the plant back.
In case you have saucers or trays, dry them out as well.
How Often To Water Poinsettia Summary
Now that you know what suits your poinsettia the best. Always make sure to keep an eye out for its general well-being. The key takeaway from this article is that there is no definite schedule you can follow when watering this plant. Instead, you must adjust to various factors and work around them.
When you water your plant, remember that it is not a type that will appreciate frequent light watering. Generous amounts of water given each time with gaps in between is the best way for this plant’s growth.
If you got the answer to how often to water poinsettia, share this with your friends and help them out.
Meet Mattias Jonsson, the head of content at RainSaucers. Passionate about gardening and water-related topics, he’s dedicated to providing expert information and resources to help improve your home, health, and wallet. Learn from his research and experience.