Many of us have been thinking about Christmas in July and certainly by August or September. No, most of you emailing me are not out buying gifts as this time. You are thinking about your poinsettias. Maybe you forgot to pruning them or they are starting to get a bit tall. What are you going to do.
The common question is when can you prune them? Well, pruning started way back in March and if your are on schedule you have been doing some pruning as the plants grow. If you missed the prunings then you probably have a fairly tall or even lanky plant.
Early September is the last time to prune your plants. My suggestion is not giving them a hard pruning. Just cut back the ends of the shoots 4 to 6 inches. This will help make the stems a bit more sturdy and give some new shoots. The very last pruning time is the end of the month.
Do keep the plants moist and protect them from winds. You can feed the plants every other week if in containers or every 6 to 8 weeks if in the ground. If you want to save some time and ensure uniform feedings use the slow release Miracle-Gro or Osmocote fertilizers following label instructions.
You know, maybe it is time to be thinking of Christmas if you want beautiful poinsettias. The growers have already started their Holiday crops.