Boma Garden Centre has been selling Christmas Plants for over twenty years in London’s Kentish Town. Customers’ top picks and feedback from first-hand experience have shown the best Christmas plants for decorating the home during the festive season and the plants that make the perfect holiday gifts.
Check out our favourite Christmas plant ideas, which are available at the garden centre and online from 6th December so that they are in full bloom during the Christmas season. Boma now offers Nationwide Delivery (except in Northern Ireland).
The Best Christmas Plants
Poinsettia is the UK’s favourite traditional Christmas plant gift. Its brightly coloured red bracts burst from this tropical plant in late autumn, lasting until the end of winter. Originally from Mexico, this festive plant has been well-liked since the Victorian times and is closely related to the prevalent hardy garden plant Euphorbia. Poinsettia grows into large trees in Mexico and is named after Joel Roberts Poinsett, an American physician who discovered them.
No Christmas table is complete without a festive Poinsettia! One of the most popular selling plants during the pre-Christmas season, Boma Garden Centre is an avid fan and stocks the highest quality Poinsettia in London with great obsession.
Did you know Poinsettia is a short-day plant?
Poinsettia requires only 10 hrs of light a day from September to start their adorable bright red bracts, which Christmas enthusiasts love so much. Artificial screens black out the light from the Poinsettia glasshouse growing environment.
Poinsettia’s global romance dates back to the Aztecs
It is a Christmas plant loved so much that Poinsettia has a festival celebration day! That’s right– 12th December is officially National Poinsettia Day in the US, with serious consideration for making a day of it at [Boma] too.
Aztec King Montezuma (1466 – 1520) loved this Poinsettia so much that he used them to adorn his palaces; the Aztecs believed this plant was a gift from heaven.
Top tips for keeping your Poinsettia healthy over Christmas
- Poinsettias are very sensitive to temperature changes so place them in a sheltered spot away from cold drafts and excessive heat from central heating systems.
- Place them in a warm room in indirect light.
- Keep a constant temperature of between 13-16°C
- Feel the compost in the top of the pot with your thumb and only water if it feels dry
Chrismas Rose (Helleborus 'Little Darling')
A Christmas plant that plant lovers adore is Hellebore, known as Christmas Rose. Helleborus’ Little Darling’ is a compact clump-forming perennial with larger-than-average flowers in pure white. Its attractive yellow stamens contrast beautifully against a sea of luscious dark green foliage.
As an outdoor plant that can sit in a container outside the front door, Christmas Rose will bloom throughout the winter. It is perfect for tubs and baskets and also suitable for a woodland garden setting. Hellebore breeders have been working to produce these new varieties with upright-facing flowers.
Christmas Cactus (Schlumbergera truncata)
Christmas cacti are tropical cacti native to Brazil that flower in England in wintertime and throughout Christmas. Flower buds should begin to appear in early December. The flowers are available in fluorescent red, purple, pink and yellow and fill the wiry flattened stems of the cactus. Breeding programmes have created a whole range of colours, including bicoloured varieties. An attention-grabbing plant that is easy to care for and will reward you with blooms yearly.
An evergreen plant, Christmas Cactus has unusual flattened stems known as phylloclades. Did you Know Christmas Cactus are naturally epiphytes? They happily grow high up in the canopy of trees.
Top tips for keeping the Christmas cactus healthy
- Place in a sunny location
- Wait until the soil is dry in between watering
- Use cactus focus repotting mix when potting up (link to product)
- Feed in spring with cactus focus feed (Link to Product)
Amaryllis (Hippeastrum) at Christmas
Large, boldly coloured trumpet flowers appear from unfurling buds at the beginning of December, making Amaryllis one of the UK’s most popular indoor Christmas plants. Amaryllis is a South African native bulb that traditionally decorates rooms and is the perfect gift at Christmas.
Often available as a boxed dormant bulb in the autumn, these are easy to pot on and grow. Place the bulbs in the compost and water thoroughly after potting. When choosing a container, ensure it has adequate drainage holes at the bottom. Dormant-planted bulbs will flower 8 to 10 weeks after planting. Place in a cool dark place until you can see the green shoots appearing from the compost. Then move to a warm light environment with temperatures constantly between a minimum of 10c to 15c.
Top tips to keep Amaryllis happy in the home:
- Place in a spot with indirect light
- Let the compost dry out between watering
Indoor Cyclamen persicum will happily thrive in a warm, light spot over winter. These Mediterranean-origin plants will provide months of winter colour with their large flame-like flowers that come in a variety of colours: Pink, Purple, White and Red. The flowers contrast perfectly with the intricate heart-shaped leaves with a metallic green appearance.
Top tips to keep Cyclamen happy at home
- Keep Cyclamen in a cool windowsill of bright indirect light.
- Deadhead the flowers by twisting the flower stems. You must remove the stem from the plants to prevent rot.
- Keep the plant at a constant minimum temperature of 10° C.
Paperwhite Narcissus (Narcissus jonquilla)
You can plant scented Miniature daffodil bulbs in a range of colours known as paperwhites that will be dormant in autumn and bloom in time for Christmas. Ensure the container you choose for planting the bulbs has adequate drainage holes in the bottom. Plant at the end of October to flowers six weeks later in December. Paperwhite Narcissus flowers will last for up to 3 weeks in the home but place them away from heat sources which can reduce their flowering period significantly.
Hyacinths are available as pot-grown beauties in cobalt blue, pale blue, purple, pink, white, and wine-red hues. If you haven’t enjoyed them before, they have star-shaped flowers that crowd the upright flower spike, filling the surrounding air with their sweet perfume. Gorgeous indoors as a Christmas decorative plant, their bell-shaped flowers are tightly packed and held on strong stems. Hyacinthus orientalis ‘Delft Blue’ bears single, light blue flowers with a good fragrance. With their hardy nature, they are ideal for use indoors over winter. Afterwards, you can transfer them outside to spring borders, which combines well with spring-flowering primulas and pulmonarias.
Prepared hyacinths are specifically suited to be grown indoors. When planted before the end of September, they can flower from mid-December onwards. They can also be grown in hyacinth “glasses” using only water.
Top Tips for Hyacinth
Hyacinths grow in containers using bulb fibre. They are available as single bulbs in a 9-10.5cm pot or three bulbs in a 1Ltr or 13cm pot. The neck of the bulb protrudes above the surface.
Avoid touching the Hyacinths bulbs, as they can cause skin irritation.
You can also transfer the pot-grown bulbs into other containers, pots and window boxes. When transferring them, ensure they are in a well-drained, moderately fertile potting mix.
All the Christmas plants are available at Boma Garden Centre in Kentish Town and Boma’s online webshop, with nationwide delivery.
Boma also stocks Real Cut Christmas Trees, including Nordman Fir and Fraser Fir, available with local delivery. Boma’s small sizes of Pot-Grown Nordmann Fir Christmas Trees are available for nationwide delivery. The garden centre also stocks Cinco Christmas Tree stands and handmade Christmas decorations, including lights and Pine Wreaths.