(NewsSpace.com) – When one thinks of Christmas, there are common themes that pop into mind: Christmas trees, lights, decorations, and presents. However, there’s also the holiday plant that many people bring home—the poinsettia. These colorful blooms have grown in popularity over the years. So much so that they’re now a $213 million industry in the US.
One of the best-selling flowers worldwide, the poinsettia is very popular in the US. In fact, sales have grown by 40% since 2020. The plant originated in Mexico and only blooms for a few short weeks in November and December.
However, there’s a downside to the industry. Despite their origins, many of the plant’s varieties are patented in the US, which makes it hard for Mexican farmers to make money on them as they have to pay fees before they can grow and sell the plants. Even so, when they do sell poinsettias to the US, they cannot sell the entire plant, only cuttings, due to soil regulations.
Now, Mexican growers are trying to take back the industry and their selling power by filing patents with Mexican regulators that will allow them to avoid paying exorbitant fees and keep more profit.
The poinsettia has a very rich history that dates back many centuries. It was called the “leathered flower” in the 1300s by the Aztecs, who used its latex sap as a means of treating wounds and fevers. They also used it as a dye and warrior paint for rituals.
In the 16th century, Spanish settlers who arrived in Mexico began using the poinsettia as a Christmas Eve flower to decorate scenes and attract people to worship. Then, three centuries later, it started making its way to the United States, where its popularity continued to grow. Now, people can find them in a few different colors, including white, pink, and red.
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