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The Many Kinds of Euphorbias You May See

Let’s talk about Euphorbia today. Euphorbia is a genus of plants, which means they are all very closely related, but they’re also one of the largest groups of flowers in the world. There’s many kinds of Euphorbia and you may already have had one before like poinsettias. They’re sometimes called the “Spurge” family and something they all share is their latex sap that they produce when broken or snapped. This sap is poisonous and can be dangerous if ingested or can be irritating on skin.


So, you already know of poinsettias, but there’s some very common houseplant varieties like Crown of Thorns, and Devils Backbone. They’re sometimes mistaken as cacti because they can be thorny and need less water, but they aren’t true cacti. Those grown as houseplants aren’t the only kind of Euphorbia though.

We have a nice selection of annuals to choose from like the hybrids Starblast White, Starblast Snowdrift, Diamon Frost, and even Diamon Snow. They’re great for filling out a container with stark white flowers anywhere you plant them. Their differences come down to the density and size of the flowers and foliage. Another set of varieties we have are the Miner’s Merlot and Ascot Rainbow. These have striking foliage and grow very well as an accent or complementing other plants as a filler too in a pot. The dark purples of Miner’s Merlot would do well to complement our Celosia Dracula or Petunia Midnight Gold. Ascot Rainbow shines bright and would do well brighter plants like petunia Bees Knees.


The varieties that we have for annual growing are all drought and heat tolerant. They do best in full or part sun areas which can be great to add in low maintenance planters or gardens. They respond well to trimming if you find that they’re getting a bit unruly but remember to be mindful of the sap and maybe wear gloves if you’re pruning. Although there’s lots of Euphorbias to choose from, from houseplants to annual gardens, there’s sure to be one that’s right for you.


-Sean Church-Bornkessel

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