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Kastuba (Euphorbia pulcherrima) or poinsettia is a subtropical plant that originated from southern Mexico and Central America. The poinsettia was named after the first United States ambassador to Mexico, who introduced these plants to the U.S. in 1825.
Leaves the top of the red line with colorful Christmas ornaments. In countries with cool climates, kastuba used as an ornamental plant that is difficult to obtain a replacement interest in winter.
In South American folklore, kastuba is a major figure in the creation myths that believed the Maya as a powerful creature from another world. In the Nahuatl language, this plant is called cuitlaxochitl (interest dirt), as the seeds grow on dung of birds that eat seeds kastuba. In Spanish, this plant is called flor de pascua (Easter flower), flor de nochebuena (flower Christmas Eve), or arbolito de Navidad (Christmas plants).
Plant shrubs with a height from 60 cm to 4 meters. Leaves oval-shaped leaves, dark green, about 7-16 cm long. Flowers called cyathia clustered at the end of the stem are arranged in series and do not have petals, but underneath there is the upper leaves (called braktea) a dark red, pink, and white. Leaf color of plants that attract the top is often mistaken as flowers
Outside his native habitat, these plants are cultivated in a greenhouse. Plants like the morning sun, but happy when the day began to shade in the heat. In countries with cool climates, the plants can not stand the cold weather below 10 ° C and not suitable for planting outdoors.
Family Paul Ecke of Encinitas California is known as a producer of varieties kastuba lush and bright. Of the more than 100 varieties available, leaves the top varieties with bright red parents (varieties Freedom, Barbara Ecke Supreme, Mrs. Paul Ecke, and Angelica), preferably as an ornamental plant to welcome the celebration of Christmas. Some of the less popular varieties have leaves the top of the pink (Dorothe), white, and beige (Regina, Ecke's White). There are also varieties with leaves of orange, light green, and a mixture of beige and red. [1]
Having maintained for some time, often do not want anymore Kastuba red leaves like a new time of purchase. Plants should be placed in a dark place for a long time to want to bloom. Long nights in the fall is necessary for plants to be flowering, and flowering plants would not be affected even if only a little light at night. In the tropics, plants that do not want red leaves can be tricked by closing the top of the plants with cloth or black plastic and kept away from sunlight.
Kastuba can be propagated by cuttings, pieces of old branches immersed in a container of water before it is plugged into the planting medium consisting of a mixture of soil and sand. Before placing a container of water, which is on the stem sap must be wiped first.
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