Joel Roberts Poinsett came across the Poinsettia in the 1820s in Mexico while stationed there as US Ambassador. Intrigued by the plant, he brought cuttings home cultivate on his farm in Greenville, North Carolina. Because of its short bloom cycle over the holiday months, it became known as the Christmas flower and was named after him.
Poinsettias like to be in temperatures between 60 and 70 degrees Fahrenheit and like bright indirect light. Keep them away from drafts either warm or cold. They are thirsty plants that like lots of water and can go dry easily. At the same time, you want to make sure the soil drains, because they will suffer if they are over watered too. Do not get water on the leaves or flowers — it could cause spotting or rot. They are brittle plants — brushing against them could damage the leaves, and bracts break off easily if bumped or not handled gently. With proper care in a proper environment, the bloom will last up to 6 to 8 weeks.