I’m Steve Ember with the VOA Special
English Agriculture Report.
colder northern countries,
poinsettias are a sure sign that Christmas is near.
Nearly all sales of
this flowering plant come at wintertime. Yet the poinsettia is
Central America and needs warm weather to grow.
colder northern countries: los países boreales (del norte) más
a sure sign: una evidencia inconfundible;
nearly all sales: casi todas las ventas;
native to: originaria de;
warm weather to grow: clima cálido para desarrollarse;
Red poinsettias are
the best known.
But there are about one hundred different kinds, and they come in
the best known: las más conocidas;
Here is how the poinsettia
of America’s most popular flowers:
of: se convirtió en una de;
In 1825, a man
Joel Roberts Poinsett was appointed the United States minister to
Mexico. Mister Poinsett was a diplomat, but he was also interested in
plants. He brought back examples of a colorful plant to the United
was appointed: fue nombrado;
diplomat: diplomático, embajador;
brought back examples: trajo muestras;
The botanical name for this plant is
Euphorbia pulcherrima. In Latin, that
means “most beautiful euphorbia.” There are hundreds of members of the
euphorbia family. Rubber trees, trees that produce
castor and tung oil,
and the cassava – an important
– are all members of this
most beautiful euphorbia: la euforbia (género botánico) más hermosa;
rubber trees: árboles que producen latex;
castor and tung oil: aceite de ricino y de palo (tung);
cassava: yuca, mandioca;
root crop: tubérculo comestible;
can grow to four
meters in size. They contain latex, like rubber trees.
can grow to four
meters in size: pueden alcanzar hasta cuatro metros en volumen;
The flowers of the poinsettia are
very small. Around the flowers are colorful leaves called
make the plant popular.
bracts: brácteas (hojas que parecen flores por su colorido);
In the 1920s, Albert Ecke
and his son Paul became interested in the poinsettia’s
ability to flower
in winter. Paul Ecke thought it would be good at Christmastime. The two
started a farm near Encinitas, California.
became interested in: se interesaron en;
ability to flower: capacidad para florecer;
started a farm near: fundaron una granja cerca de;
At first Paul Ecke, and later his
son, Paul Ecke Junior, grew large plants in fields. Then they sent them
to growers by train. Growers could divide the large plants into
to raise smaller ones in
greenhouses until the holidays.
grew large plants in fields: cultivó grandes plantas en el campo;
to growers by train: a los agricultores por tren;
into cuttings: en esquejes;
to raise: para cultivar;
In the 1960s
poinsettias that grew best in containers. The Eckes started to sell
cuttings from these new plants.
that grew best in containers: que se desarrollaban mejor en macetas;
Today, five companies supply
poinsettia cuttings for the world’s large growers. Three are European.
Poinsettias are the most popular
potted flowering plant in America, with sales last year of about
hundred fifty million dollars.
potted flowering plant: planta de flor en maceta;
hundred fifty million dollars: 200 millones de dólares.
This VOA Special English Agriculture
Report was written by Mario Ritter. I'm Steve Ember.