MONTPELIER, Va. (WRIC) — Thanksgiving is tomorrow, but it already looks like Christmas at Bell Nursery. Red and green have been in full bloom for months.
“Obviously with poinsettias, it’s a big part of the Christmas holiday,” says Jonathan van Wingerden. “It really is something that brings a lot of joy.”
Growing plants is in van Wingerden’s blood. His family sold their greenhouse in Indiana and moved to this area in 1985 to start Virginia Growers. Bell Nursery bought it in 2008, but the bright colors and traditions are the same. Every year from June to December, it is poinsettias morning, noon and night.
“It’s a good feeling knowing that we’re such a big part of the holiday which is obviously a big part of people’s lives,” says van Wingerden.
Pink and white plants are mixed in with the red ones that most people associate with the holidays.
“It’s just the traditional Christmas color. Everybody likes to ohhh and ahhh over the new colors, but 80-percent of the sales are red and it’s probably always going to stay that way.”
There are 200,000 poinsettia plants grown in the Montpelier nursery, but they spread holiday cheer across the miles. They end up in Home Depot stores from New Jersey to North Carolina, so what family and friends of locals buy elsewhere might have roots here in Central Virginia.
When the last poinsettia moves out for the season, it is time to plan for next year. “The whole circle starts over again,” says van Wingerden with a smile.