[poin-set-ee-uh, -set-uh]
a plant, Euphorbia (Poinsettia ) pulcherrima, of the spurge family, native to Mexico and Central America, having variously lobed leaves and brilliant scarlet, pink, or white petallike bracts.

1830–40; < Neo-Latin, named after J. R. Poinsett (1799–1851), American minister to Mexico, who discovered the plant there in 1828; see -ia

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World English Dictionary
poinsettia (pɔɪnˈsɛtɪə)
a euphorbiaceous shrub, Euphorbia (or Poinsettia) pulcherrima, of Mexico and Central America, widely cultivated for its showy scarlet bracts, which resemble petals
[C19: New Latin, from the name of J. P. Poinsett (1799--1851), US Minister to Mexico, who introduced it to the US]

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Word Origin & History

1836, Mod.L. genus name, in allusion to Joel R. Poinsett (1779-1851), U.S. ambassador to Mexico, who is said to have brought the plant to the attention of botanists.
Online Etymology Dictionary, © 2010 Douglas Harper
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Example sentences
But there's a little more anger every year, an emotion as pointed as a
  poinsettia but not as pretty.
In short, the art historian and the artist are about as similar as a cellphone
  and a poinsettia plant.
Poinsettia poisoning occurs when someone touches the sap of the poinsettia
  plant or eats parts of the plant.
Eighty-nine poinsettia cultivars were evaluated for resistance to scab, and all
  varieties developed lesions and were unmarketable.
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