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I am totally wiped out.  I’ve been up really late the past couple of nights and worked very hard both days.  The first night I stayed awake because I was struggling to write.  The second night I stayed awake because the words were flowing so well that I didn’t want to stop!  It’s funny how that works.  Yesterday I moved my room at Lucketts and did some shopping and today I did the photo shoot for the cover of my book.  You wouldn’t think that would be too involved, but I assure you it was an all day process.  I had to clean, rearrange furniture and accessories, set a table, make floral arrangements, fix lighting, snap pictures, change lenses, edit the photos, e-mail them for feedback, tweak the styling, take more pictures change lenses again, edit the photos…and on like that all day.  I am doing all of the photography for the book, which I was a little nervous about at first, but I felt totally comfortable during the shoot today.  I enjoyed it and was super excited when I would get a great shot with perfect lighting.

Tomorrow I need to work on some HGTV projects and just spend some time playing with my boys.

Tonight, I get to talk a little about holiday decor.  Oh, I can’t wait to decorate for Christmas, so this was a little teaser for me.

A couple of days ago, four gorgeous poinsettias arrived at my door.  I haven’t had many fresh poinsettias in my house before, mainly because I am not very good at keeping green things alive, but also because we always had cats in our home and I thought they were poisonous.  Apparently that’s a myth!  Who knew?  Well, now that I have a taste of having these live beauties in my house, it may become an annual thing.  I’ve been busy with holiday freelance jobs and getting started on my book, so I haven’t put up my Christmas decorations, yet. I thought it would look amazing, though, to clip off some white blooms and tuck them into a live tree.  Unfortunately, my tree isn’t up, so I had to think of other things.

I grabbed a large antique basket and filled it with two white poinsettias (these are my favorite) and added one of my glitter banners to the front.   It’s simple, but so beautiful.


I love decorating with things that are naturally beautiful, so there’s no effort needed.  Plunk them in a basket, add a banner, done.  Beautiful.


I also received a more traditional red poinsettia, so I clipped that one and added it to a large dough bowl filled with greenery and mercury glass spheres.




The nice thing about these seasonal flowers is the variety.  You can get red, burgundy, white, pink, spotted, etc.  It’s nice to be able to break out of the traditional red and green color scheme, but still have traditional elements in your decor.



You can find fresh poinsettias at garden centers, home improvement stores and I’ve even seen them in the grocery store.

Show off your holiday decorating with fresh poinsettias on the Greenhouse Diaries and you could win a $50 gift certificate to Olive Garden (which happens to be my favorite restaurant.)  The Great Poinsettia Decorating Challenge ends December 15, 2011.

I was compensated for sharing this post about fresh poinsettias, but all opinions are my own.

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  1. I love poinsettias and usually snatch them up after Christmas to give some life to the drabness that January seems to bring. Now if only I could get them to live past February.

  2. Wonderful photos Marian. OK, I debated about giving you this info, but I don’t think the poinsettia industry wants to capitalize on a poisonous plant, but I had one last year that I mistakenly felt was no problem to my cats. I have one kitty that loves to eat anything “green”. and the poinsettia was her choice new target. She vomited violently for a full afternoon. no it wasn’t poisonous per se, but I can’t say that I’ll have live ones again, at least where she can get to them. faux for me. Don’t want to be a downer, just be watchful of your kitties. ( you can delete this comment after you read it if you want)

    • Miss Mustard Seed says:

      Oh on, that’s a good point. We had cats who got sick from drinking the water out of a live Christmas tree and from eating common house plants. I think you just have to be smart about what you have in your home and you certainly don’t want to bring anything in that might make your pets sick.

  3. Kathy Porowski says:

    I know they say now that poinsettias are not poisonous…But….I had a pair of Dalmations back in the 90s. This was just after they starting saying the plants are fine. My male got hit by a car on Thanksgiving. I should say run down, because the idiot did it on purpose. Anyway, My female started hiding under the kids bed, and not eating. I thought it had to with the loss of her mate. After a couple days of this, I was tring to open her mouth and make her eat. She had blisters all over her mouth and tongue and was rushed to the vet. He did an autopsy after she passed. She lived 3 days on IVs. He could narrow it down to antifreeze or poinsettia. She didn’t have access to antifreeze and was an indoor dog, But, there was poinsettia plants with dead leaves falling in the living. room. Please be careful!! I too still only buy silk!! This too you can delete, I just wouldn’t want to see you go through any needless heartbreak! Sorry to be such a downer!

  4. I loved your poinsettia display!! So beautiful and like you said…so effortless!! I am getting me some…I love them!!

  5. So gorgeous. No poinsettias for us though – kids are getting a kitten for Christmas!
    Must get to work on our banner however – now what to say…all those choices!

    Happy decorating!

  6. I am certain to get a poinsettia or two this year!! Love the dough bowl idea. Now get some sleep for yourself!

  7. Beautiful, simple, easy arrangement. Just the way I like things.

  8. Kristen says:

    Beautiful Marian!! I love the white ones and that basket is perfect!


  9. Kristine Price says:

    My tree isn’t up yet either. Thanks – you make me feel better. I’m wiped too. But still going junkin’ today lol
    You always do a great job Marian!

  10. Pam James says:

    Love the poinsettias. My mom died in December 2001. A sister-in-law who lived far away sent a beautiful salmon colored poinsettia to my home. The color was brilliant and it was decked out with a huge gold ribbon bow. The sheer beauty did much to soothe my sad heart. I always try to add a few poinsettias to my Christmas decorating as a reminder of Mom and that gift that was such a blessing.

  11. Re-pot your poinsettias into bigger clay pots after the season passes and they will thrive for years to come. They don’t have to be annual plants (though the industry would like you to believe they are). My mom has a beautiful plant from last year, it is bigger (of course) and it doesn’t have that weird forced moundy shape.

  12. maggie says:

    I love poinsettias but unfortunately can never keep them alive much longer than February. :( That doesn’t stop me, though!
    When you snip the flowers off for arrangements seal the cut stem with flame and put them in a little container of water. They will last much longer that way!

  13. Stayed up late making your no sew tree skirt! Its lookin’ good! Thanks for the awesome idea!!!!

  14. Oh wow, love your white poinsettas, i thought they were poisonous too…
    I’m so excited for you about your book… it’s cool that you’re doing the photography… your photos are amazing… It’s hard for me to imagine all that you do and keep up with, it all sounds like so much.
    I understand about the writing. Sometimes i can just whip out painting after painting and it’s so effortless… and then i’ll dry up, it’s just not in me to paint, and i can’t force it. Those times freak me out, because it seems like i’ll never be inspired again. But, you just have to be patient it WILL come back, and you’ll flow again…


  15. I adore pointsettias, and am especially loving the coral coloured ones this year. I’m a veterinarian, and I can’t count how many times that I heard clients panic because their pets ate pointsettias. The above commenter is correct. They are technically labelled as toxic, but cause mainly mild-moderate gastrointestinal irritation, unlike other plants, such as Lily’s which are HIGHLY toxic, causing renal failure and often death (be cautious at Easter time with those Easter Lilies!). Pointsettias are relatively safe. Of course, the severity of symptoms will vary from pet to pet, but I do not hesitate to have Pointsettias in my house, full of pets =)

  16. Beautiful, I love the white poinsettias in the basket, with banner it’s just a “perfect” look. Thanks for sharing.

  17. I love this holiday plant, when mixed with greens and white hydrangeas. Your picture with the silver balls is sweet. I wish I could get away with poinsettias all over and nix the tree, but the kids will be home, so that’s a no-no!

  18. I can’t wait to get up there and help you with the logistics! You are so talented! You just need a little support staff to really BLOOM.

  19. Katie says:

    Our church lets you buy pointsettas and dedicate them to someone and they fill up the whole front of the sanctuary. It’s gorgeous. I’ve always wondered what happens to the plants after the new year so maybe I’ll ask for a leftover or two and try re-potting it! Gorgeous photos! You are such an inspiration!

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