The ultimate girl’s day out with Tamara – Part 2, an amazing poinsettia tour

 

What object gives you a pop of instant Christmas?

That would most definitely be a poinsettia. Nothing but nothing comes closer to that statement as a stand alone element than one of these specialty flowers.

Especially if you line your ceiling with them…

Or… just leave them on the floor of your hallway. 🙂

No matter where they are or what they do, instant impact is their middle name.

Meager beginnings – this was the first greenhouse that’s still in operation. All the tables were 100% DIY projects built by Tamara’s husband, Byron.

And no one knows that better than Tamara Jansen, of Darvonda Nurseries, a family run poinsettia wholesale business located in beautiful Langley, BC. Tamara invited me over to her place to tour the workings of her poinsettia operation after I was chosen to be part of a compensated joint blogging venture on decorating with poinsettias which you’ll see in Part 4.


Tamara didn’t expect nor compensate me for this post nor video, I just wanted to do a little extra. 🙂



So Tamara, what’s the deal anyway? Why tour a poinsettia facility?


I had been noticing a decline in the use of the traditional poinsettia plant for decorating at Christmas both in print and television. I have been concerned that our industry hasn’t been actively encouraging designers/bloggers/magazine editors to include our FABULOUS products as part of their decorating palette. I would like to see the flowers that we market become a larger part of every home’s entertainment budget, bringing color and life into homes across North America.

(don’t you LOVE that she included bloggers in the mix? Hello… she gets us!)




This is one big place! How large is it anyway?


We currently have 4 separate growing facilities in Langley which includes 15 acres of outdoor mum production, and 20 acres of glass and poly greenhouse production. Staff has increased from only 2 in the first year, to over 100 full and part time employees during the seasonal highs in Spring. We’ve been in the wholesale business for 25 years and retail for 4 years.




In a nutshell, what’s the start to finish of a poinsettia?


In July, a cutting is taken from the “Mother’ stock plant. It’s then dipped into a rooting hormone, then planted in oasis or soilless peat. They are then misted regularly until roots begin to form and then moved to their final pot size. After a number of weeks, the tips of the cuttings are removed to encourage branching, using growth regulators to keep the crop even (no bolting). 


Flowers begin natural coloration in October while in total darkness, then are shipped early November. 


What’s the REAL proper way to care for them once you get them home?


* Keep them away from drafts. 
* Don’t allow them to stand in water nor dry out completely.
* And don’t place them too close to a high traffic area. Poinsettias are fragile and can damage when people or pets bump into them.


I can attest to that one. I broke one of mine by trying it in too many areas. 🙁 Easy does it…




So, I have pets. Do I need to worry about bringing these lovelies into my own home?




They aren’t poisonous. You and your pet would have to eat a “boat load” of poinsettias to feel sick, however they are not poisonous.


What’s the lifespan of a poinsettia?


They can just keep growing and growing. It depends on YOU. 🙂


…gulp! 🙂


So here’s a little live action video where Tamara takes you for a quick 6 minute tour on how these beauties are grown and prepared for shipping. It’s really quite a cool process!

Sorry about that still shot, Tamara. Blame it on You Tube! You’re cute regardless. 🙂

Here’s a shot and post from Tamara’s blog on the process they went through designing the gift baskets from scratch. Amazing and so inspiring!

And be looking for their stock in big box stores and Costco!


That was a very fun and incredibly gorgeous tour! 

And next up? Tamara and I spent some time yanking old stuff from one barn and putting it into her store barn to decorate with. You’ll love her store… wait till I show you the massive light they made… oh my… get your pin fingers ready, it’s quite amazing!

All parts to this series are HERE

Part 1 – an ultimate lunch at Little White House in Langley

Part 2 – a poinsettia tour – this entry

Part 3 – We decorate Tamara’s barn store


Part 4 – Decorating my own home with poinsettias (will be on my sponsor blog)



Join Tamara’s Great Poinsettia Decorating Challenge linkup for a chance to win a  fab $50 dinner!

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  1. I was just going to say the same thing. I was always told they were poisonous, and having 2 very curious basset hounds, I just never had them in my house. So glad to know differently, as I love them and they make me think of my grandpa. When he was alive, he gave all the girls in the family poinsettias for Christmas. That place is gorgeous!

  2. When I was first married and in my early twenties, we rented a house on a farm setting that had lots of greenhouses…and at this time of year, they were loaded with poinsettias. Brings back the memories!

  3. I love poinsettias! I have a hard time keeping them alive in my home, since we burn with wood, they have a tendency to dry out. I need to find a location where they won’t dry out or get a draft because I think they look gorgeous!

  4. This was fabulous! The video is wonderful! Really puts me in the spirit of giving! Poinsettias are one of my favorite gifts to take to someone’s home or to small businesses here in town that I frequent throughout the year!

    Tamara’s design for the planter is clever! I have NOT seen them here in the states yet!! I hope to, though! Thank you Donna!!!!!

  5. Having enjoyed the tour of their facilities myself I can attest to the awesomeness of the place and of course of Tamara.
    She is such a fun and generous blogger, and by that I don’t mean money.

  6. What an interesting post Donna! I shared it with friends who operate a greenhouse and used to grow and sell poinsettias. I’m looking forward to the next installments. Thanks for sharing. Blessings, Pamela

  7. It truly did feel like a fieldtrip and I didn’t even have to leave the house! What a wonderful series Donna! I too was going to ask if they were sold in the States. Currently I am not close to a Costco, anywhere else that I might be able to check. I’ve now been inspired to get a poinsettia this year and would love to purchase from Tamara if possible.

    XoXo,
    Kristal

  8. I am crazy for poinsettias and always use them..white is my favorite and we put them in at least three spits at Christmas!…they seem to be well featured in the dec group of mags…so hopefully they are outed again!

  9. What a great post Donna ~ love the video ~ the flowers are amazing!! Does she supply Costco right across Canada?? I will have to take a look as I love those holders.

  10. Oh Donna – I loved this post. Actually, Tamara and I have chatted a few times back and forth on my blog. I had a small – I mean itsy bitsy greenhouse operation for 12 years – somehow she found me. I looked to her website at Darvonda for inspiration many times – the scale of their operation absolutely amazes me and I love the stories of where they started and of their amazingly talented family. She’ll “bring back the poinsettia” I have no doubt – flowers are their thing and they are beyond awesome at growing, selling and promoting floriculture. I wish them much more incredible success – they are very deserving. And I’m jealous you got to go in person. Love reading all your posts – you inspire me a great deal also! Merry Christmas!