An extremely popular flower during the Holiday Season is the beautiful poinsettia plant.
The Aztecs called poinsettias “Cuetlaxochitl.”
During the 14th – 16th century the sap was used to control fevers and the bracts (modified leaves) were used to make a reddish dye for the showy colored parts of the plant.
Poinsettias could not be grown in high altitude so he Aztec Kings would have them brought to Mexico City.
In the early 1900’s the Ecke family of southern California grew poinsettias outdoors for use as landscape plants and as a cut flower.
Eventually the family grew poinsettias in greenhouses and today is recognized as the leading producer of poinsettias in the United States.
Today, the flower is grown in commercial greenhouses, contributing $250 million to the United States economy.
The local FFA Chapter grows their own poinsettias to sell during the Holiday Season in red, pink and white.