The Cantigny horticulture department will host its annual Shades of Crimson Poinsettia Display on Friday, November 17. Hours are 11 am to 7 pm for this popular holiday event at the park’s greenhouse.
Parking ($5) is in the main lot, outside the Cantigny Visitors Center. From there, visitors can walk to the greenhouse or ride a festive trolley. Admission to Shades of Crimson is free but advance registration (630.260.8265) is requested for groups of 10 or more.
At the greenhouse, guests will see 15 varieties of poinsettias in full bloom and about 3,000 plants in all. Tours are self-guided and photography is welcome. Horticulture staff members will be on hand to discuss the plants and answer questions. Poinsettias will be specially priced for sale (mini $4; small $6; medium $16; and large $36).
Cantigny’s poinsettias begin as three-inch-long cuttings, then are carefully nurtured and groomed for about six months. Water, fertilizer, light and temperature are each regulated to achieve the spectacular results that visitors will see at the greenhouse.
Nearly half of the Cantigny poinsettias go to the Wheaton A.M. Rotary Club which uses them to raise money for its community projects. Another 300 plants are used for holiday decorating in the museums, restaurants and other buildings throughout the 500-acre Cantigny estate.
After Shades of Crimson, sales to the public will continue at the Cantigny Shop in the Visitors Center and the Cantigny Golf Shop at regular prices. Unsold plants are donated to local nursing homes and care centers.
Also on November 17: