Arctic, Freedom Peppermint, Silverstar Red, Sonora Jingle, Premium Polar – they’re not holiday candies or names of rogue reindeer, but are among the many Poinsettia cultivars on display during the annual Poinsettia Open House held at the Floriculture Greenhouse on the George H. Cook campus. Almost 100 varieties provided by the leading breeders/propagators such as Ball, Dummen, Ecke, and Syngenta, were on display at the Open House which was held in November. The Open House is followed up by a plant sale of the Poinsettias, which this year is on Tuesday, December 2, through Friday, December 5, 11:00 to 3:00 each day. The plants are selling for $8 per 6” pot.
The annual Open House serves as an educational opportunity for those interested in learning more about this sometimes frustrating and still important floricultural crop, regardless of whether they sell them, buy them, or just enjoy a colorful display and it is a chance to see what’s new, and learn more about growing, handling, and marketing this popular crop. This year’s event demonstrated finishing the crop under “cold” temperature regimes and providing water and inorganic nutrition thru a computer controlled trickle irrigation system.
The Floriculture Greenhouses are located behind Blake Hall, directly off of Nichol Avenue on the Cook Campus of SEBS. The video below, from a previous Open House, provides a look at what goes on to present this colorful display.