December 12 was declared a national holiday by the U.S. Congress in 2002. National Poinsettia Day celebrates the poinsettia flower and marks the death of Joel Roberts Poinsett, the first U.S. ambassador to Mexico.
Poinsett came across the flower on a trip to Mexico and introduced the native Mexican plant to the U.S. when he sent a few back home to South Carolina. With the exotic flowers growing remarkably well in his greenhouse, Poinsett sent them to friends and botanical gardens all over the country. The flower became known as the poinsettia, a flower we’ve come to associate with Christmas.
Celebrate National Poinsettia Day by purchasing a plant for yourself or a friend!
Learn more about poinsettias, the history of its holiday and folk stories related to the flower here.
Sources: aadl.org, poinsettiaday.com