Although its genus is split into both cacti and succulents, Euphorbias are also popular options for easy care plants with interesting appearances. They come in a myriad of shapes, colours and silhouette which is the perfect way to spruce up a space without any foliage.
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Below is a general care guide for Euphorbias which can slightly differ depending on variety.
Light & Temperature
Strong light is necessary for growing healthy Euphorbias. Note that some species may scorch in full sun if they have not been accustomed to it yet.
Also, similar to cacti and succulents, they prefer hot and dry environment and should be kept away from very cold drafts. It is important to note that the temperature you keep your succulent in should be directly proportional to the amount of water it gets.
Watering, Humidity & Misting
As Euphorbias are generally drought tolerant due to their fleshy stems and leaves, you would only need to water them once every two weeks, allowing the soil to completely dry out between waterings.
Soil and Repotting
Euphorbias prefer fast-draining cacti mix with lots of drainage and aeration.
Euphorbias are generally slow-growing plants and will rarely need repotting. Repot them only when they have out-grown their pots.
Propagating Euphorbias is typically easily done through stem cuttings. Be sure to wear gloves when handling your Euphorbia as making skin contact with its milky sap can cause skin irritations. After cutting the stem, leave the cut stem out to dry overnight before potting into fresh cacti mix. This will increase the success rate of rooting and propagating it. Rooting hormone can also be used to help speed up the rooting process. Make sure the soil is lightly moist during this process.
Euphorbias do not require a special fertiliser to grow. Use a balanced fertiliser formulated for houseplants. Follow directions on the label of plant food.
Euphorbias are generally toxic and should be kept out of the reach of children and pets. Their milky sap is considered to be toxic and cause skin irritations to be humans and pets, make sure to wear gloves when handling.
Under the right care and conditions, your plant will grow happy and healthy. But here are some issues you may encounter while caring for a Euphorbia:
Scale, mealybugs, fungus gnats and spider mites - When spotted, wash these pests off using cotton swabs and water.
Sunburn - While they love light, they can turn yellow or brown from too much direct sun. Move the euphorbia away from its light source to cool down.
White/grey powdery film - This is due to mildew which is a fungal disease. It is caused by high humidity, poor ventilation, insufficient light and/or lack of nutrients. Applying neem oil is a good way of eliminating mildew.
Root rot and fungal disease - This is due to overwatering. Err on the side of under watering as most of the time you can bring them back from dehydration without issues.
Wrinkles - This is a sign that your euphorbia is very dry and a soak-watering is necessary. After watering, be sure to empty excess water and not let it sit in water.
Handling spikes - Use leather work gloves or kitchen tongs to gently handle the spikes and to avoid the pricks.