The December Birth Flowers are Narcissus and Poinsettia

The birth flowers for December are the pretty Narcissus and the vibrant Poinsettia, which both flower during the month of December.

December Birth Flower: Narcissus

The primary birthday flower for December is the Narcissus which blooms in late winter to spring (Northern Hemisphere).

Narcissus is a group of plants in the amaryllis family, also known as Daffodil or Jonquil, and the flowers are white, yellow or orange.

Narcissus are native to woodlands and meadows of southern Europe and North Africa, with the center of diversity in the western Mediterranean.

The name Narcissus is linked to the Greek word for 'narcotic' and the Greek myth of a youth that fell in love with his own reflection (narcissism).

The Narcissus is a national flower of both Wales and Iran and the Daffodil is the flower given to celebrate a tenth wedding anniversary.

December Birth Flower: Poinsettia

The vibrant red Poinsettia is the second birthday flower for December and is widely used in Christmas decorations.

The Poinsettia is indigenous to Mexico but has been introduced world wide and there are a number of cultivated varieties. It is the national flower of the Caribbean island country of Trinidad and Tobago.

The  Poinsettia was named after a US ambassador to Mexico, J.R Poinsett, who is thought to have informed botanists about this attractive plant.

The language of flowers introduced in Victorian times says that Poinsettias symbolize good cheer and success.


Birth flower reference: Floriography Today by S. Theresa Dietz

This interesting article covers the legend behind December's flower the Poinsettia, as well as some gardening tips to keep this plant blooming for many Christmases to come.

Perfect Poinsettias Everytime

The poinsettia has been a symbol of Christmas for hundreds of years. Originating in Mexico it was named after the American botanist Dr. J.R. Poinsett who bought it to America. Dr Poinsett started growing them in his hothouse and selling them all over the world. It was not until the 1920's that they started growing them in the pots like we see them now.

The Mexican legend that goes with the plant tells the story of Pablo and Maria, two small children who loved the Christmas celebrations at the village church. But being very poor they did not have the money to buy the gift that was customary to leave at the altar after the festivities. On their way to the church and feeling very sad at not having a gift to leave they were visited by an angel who instructed them to take the weeds they saw growing on the side of the road. This they did and when they got to the church they laid them on the hay near the manger. The rest of the church goers started to laugh, poor Pablo and Maria were very embarrassed but bravely stayed where they were. Slowly the weeds started to blossom into the beautiful flowers we know and love today.

December card with birth flowers
December Flower Birthday Card by Rugosa and Pine

December Birth Flower Cards

December Birth Flower Coffee Cup
Personalized December Birth Flower Coffee Cup from Coastal Lab

December Birth Flower Gifts

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Poinsettias are tropical plants so like sunlight but not fluctuations of temperature. Keep your poinsettia's near a sunlit window during the holidays, this will protect it from the elements. The actual poinsettia flowers are very small and are within the leaves. The colour that gives us so much pleasure is actually their leaves turning either red pink or white. While blooming you need to keep the soil moist - but definitely not soggy!

Once the leaves start to droop the poinsettia is entering its dormant phase. Trim it back to the stems but leaving a couple of 'eye's' and place it somewhere sheltered to protect from the coming frost. Once spring hits, give your poinsettia a very deep watering and place it in the sun. You can at this stage plant it in the ground, this will ensure years more of enjoyment. Once midsummer hits cut some stems with 4 or more buds showing and plant these into containers for the next Christmas.

Even the most humble gift if given with love is acceptable. If treated with love and care, these beautiful flowers will bring light and love into your household too, this Christmas.

Caroline Golden is a mother, information junkie and writer. Caroline has many interests that she likes to write about in the hope she can help people with similar interests avoid some of the pitfalls she has come across.

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