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How to Grow Perennial Euphorbia Plants in your Garden

Gardener's HQ Guide to Growing Spurge

Information on Euphorbia has been split into two, this section includes information on the perennial varieties.

These plants have outstanding horizontal leaves and bracts, making them a very attractive feature in borders or for use as edging plants.

They can reach heights of between 15 and 90 cm, and the flowering time depends on the species (though never in the winter.

Some common names for perennial Euphorbia members include Spurge, Flowering, Cushion, and Wood Spurge, and Scarlet Plume. Go here for information on Euphorbia Ghost Weed species.

Euphorbia polychroma
Euphorbia polychroma (Cushion Spurge) by Patrick Standish.

Quick Perennial Euphorbia Growing and Care Guide

  • Common Names: Spurge
  • Life Cycle: Hardy perennial, Half hardy perennial.
  • Height: 6 to 30 inches (15 to 60 cm); perennial Euphorbia trees can reach up to 450 inches (1150 cm).
  • Native: Tropical regions: Americas, Africa. Temperate regions: Worldwide.
  • Growing Region: Perennial 3 to 9.
  • Flowers: Perennial: spring, summer or autumn.
  • Flower Details: Male and female flowers on the same plant.
  • Foliage: Leaves may be opposite, alternative or in the form of whorls
  • Sow Outside: 12 to 80 inches (30 to 200 cm).
  • Sow Inside:
    Stratify seeds by placing in a fridge for one week. Soak in water for two or three hours. Sow in peat pots. Germination time: ten days to one month. Temperature 65 to 70°F (18 to 21°C). Transplant outdoors following the last frost.
  • Requirements and care: Perennials: full sunlight or light shade. Soil pH 6 to 7. Average soil. Regular watering. Propagate: take cuttings after flowering; divide in spring in cool climates or in autumn if growing in a warm climate.
  • Family:
  • Closely Related Species:
  • Miscellaneous: Do not grow near water as chemicals poisonous to fish and other pond-life can leach from Euphorbia plants.

Commonly Grown Species of Euphorbia

Euphorbia barnardii

Euphorbia barnardii
Euphorbia barnardii by DerekKeats; creative commons.

Euphorbia echinus

Euphorbia echinu

Euphorbia hamata

Euphorbia hamata

Euphorbia heptagona

Euphorbia heptagona

Euphorbia horrida

Euphorbia horrida

Euphorbia ingens

Euphorbia ingens
Euphorbia ingens by Brewbooks; creative commons.

Euphorbia kalisana

Euphorbia kalisana

Euphorbia obesa

Euphorbia obesa

Euphorbia parciramulosa

Euphorbia parciramulosa

Euphorbia Flowers

Euphorbia flowers and Euphorbia parciramulosa photographs by whologwhy and Manuel Martín Vicente.

Euphorbia polygona

Euphorbia polygona

Euphorbia willmaniae

Euphorbia willmaniae

How to Grow Spurge (Euphorbia)

Spurge can be grown straight outdoors by sowing the seeds at a depth of 3 mm after the last frost of spring.

They should be sown in either a sunny or partially shaded part of the garden, they prefer a poor soil (ph 6 to 7) that can be moist. If you prefer to start perennial Euphorbia plant species indoors first then they should be prepared about 7 or 8 weeks before they are due to be put in the garden following the last frost of spring.

The seeds should be pretreated by placing in a refrigerator for one week, then imbibing in warm water for about two hours.

The Spurge seeds should then be planted into peat pots. It will take about two to four weeks for the spurge seeds to germinate at 18 to 20 degrees centigrade.

Caring for Spurge and other Perennial Euphorbia Plants in the Garden

Once the Euphorbia is growing more plants can be had by taking cuttings once flowering has occurred or by collecting more seed. Perennial Euphorbia should be watered regular while it is growing.



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