Plant-o-Pedia: Euphorbia

Euphorbia Ingens

Photo: Dabito from The New Bohemians

While more commonly seen outdoors in desert climates, many of the species in Euphorbia family make interesting and dramatic houseplants as well. With over 1200 species available, the variety in height, shape, color, and flowers can be staggering (poinsettia and fire sticks are some of the more commonly known species), so today we're focusing on just two: E. ingens and E. ammak.

The lanky height and branching arms of these Euphorbia species make them a total statement plant in any room. We loved how the E. ingens (above) in the home of Emily and Adam grabs your eye from multiple rooms, thanks to it's wide span, and it's placement as a dividing line between the dining room and living room. The E. ammak in Justina's living room (below) makes an amazing focal point, while it's placement in the back corner keeps the spiny ribs at arms length.

Euphorbia AmmakPhoto: Justina Blakeney

GET THE GREEN:  Candelabra Tree, African Candelabra (Euphorbia ingens & Euphorbia ammak).

WATER: Euphorbias are succulents, and these two species are happiest when watered only when almost dried out completely. Drainage is important, in order to avoid rotting the roots, so a pot with a drainage hole, or a base layer of rocks under the soil will keep it healthy.

SUNLIGHT: Bright indirect light. Can also do well in direct sun, but transition gradually if going from indoor bright light, to outdoor direct sun, in order to avoid scorching.

PLACEMENT: Both of these species can grow to be very tall (and heavy), so ensure you give them enough overhead room, and keep in mind that they will be harder to move as they grow larger (we recommend a rolling plant stand for large potted plants like this).

WORD OF CAUTION: Euphorbias have a milky latex sap that can irritate the skin, eyes, mouth, and stomach. Use caution when handling a cut plant (or when spines are broken off). According to the ASPCA, Euphorbias are toxic to cats and dogs.

 

P.S. If you're in the LA area and you love plants as much as we do, you'll want to stop by our editorial director, Danae's new plant pop-up shop- Folia Collective! Saturday and Sunday from 12pm-6pm at As Of Now, in the Arts District. Shop a wide variety of houseplants- perfect for Mother's Day gifts- plus care instructions to empower you to keep your plants happy!

 



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