The Q&A Archives: Growing Poinsettias Outside

Question: I have recently put a potted poinsettia plant outside and would like some tips on growing it outside here in San Diego. Do I prune it back? If yes, when? Do I fertilize? If yes, when? Will pruning keep it from getting "leggy?"

Thanks for your help!

Answer: In the most mild of Southern California climates, it is possible to grow poinsettias in the ground. Plants are native to Mexico and are naturally leggy, growing to 10' tall. Prune or pinch back every 2 months to keep them compact. Provide acidic, well-draining soil and full sunshine, and feed every 2 weeks during the growing season with a high nitrogen fertilizer. With this care your plants will thrive.

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