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Euphorbia

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euphorbia

Name

Pronounced you-FORB-eea.

Description

Euphorbia has long, elegantly curved branches with tiny pointed leaves along the whole length. These are densely interspersed with small rounded flowers. It is a little known cut flower in the UK but very popular on the Continent.

Origin

Originally from Mexico.

Colour

Red, orange, yellow, salmon pink or white flowers.

Availability

Main season September to January.

Family

Euphorbia fulgens is a close relative of the poinsettia, but you would never guess this from its appearance. Like its more traditional relative it is available at Christmas.

Care tips

Like all euphorbias, E. fulgens leaks sap when it is cut. This can be an irritant so those with sensitive skin should wear gloves when handling it. The stems can be sealed by plunging the tips quickly in boiling water, or by placing them in a separate vase for a few hours before mixing with other flowers.