Poinsettia Plants
Q.

Indoor poinsettia

Zone CM2 6UB | Vickie Dodkins added on April 19, 2017 | Answered

After 5 and a half years my poinsettia started secreting honeydew but only from the flowers. A few days since then I noticed the flowers have grown another flower. Why is this, please, as it's the first time it has ever happened? Other than watering and feeding it and occasionally giving it a good trim, I let it look after itself.

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Alisma
Certified GKH Gardening Expert
Answered on April 20, 2017

The flower-within-a-flower structure you are seeing is an unusual feature of poinsettias. The "flower" on the bottom is actually a structure called a cyathium, which contains several male flowers and one female flower. The female flower then grows outward on a long stalk until it emerges out of the cyathium. The female flower may later develop seeds.

These articles have a good explanation:
http://www.backyardnature.net/chiapas/poinsett.htm
http://www.marcperkins.net/?p=1033

I am not sure if the substance you're seeing is honeydew or a secretion from the plant. If it's honeydew, it is being produced by small plant-feeding insects, such as aphids, and controlling the pests will get rid of it.

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