Joseph's Coat

Joseph’s Coat (Poinsettia heterophylla)


Nothing puts you in the mood for Christmas quite like a red Poinsettia. At Christmas, and at other times of the year, you may see this little plant that resembles a Poinsettia while exploring Bermuda’s parks and nature reserves; you may even find it in your garden. Joseph’s Coat and Poinsettia are both members of the Euphorbia plant family. Joseph’s Coat is Native to Bermuda, as well as the Southern United States, West Indies and tropical America. It grows well in dry sandy soil and often appears as a weed in waste spaces and the edge of cultivated fields. Joseph’s Coat grows to about 2 ft high and flowers for most of the year. As with the more familiar Christmas Poinsettias, the red ‘petals’ on Joseph’s Coat are not actually flowers, but coloured leaves. The flowers appear in the centre of the red leaves and are small and inconspicuous.