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Euphorbia procumbens is a dwarf, spineless Medusoid Euphorbia that in its normal form has 2 to 3 rows of lateral shoots around the deepen…
Euphorbia procumbens - garden
Accepted Scientific Name: Euphorbia stellata Willd.
Sp. Pl., ed. 4 [Willdenow] 2(2): 886. 1799 [Dec 1799] Willd.
Origin and Habitat: It is the the principal tree euphorbia of northeast Africa ranging from East Sudan (Red Sea Hills) to Eritrea, Northern Ethiopia and Northern Somalia.
Habitat: Grows in the most exposed places in well-drained stony soils and in the crevices of rock faces of hills and slopes, in montane dry deciduous and evergreen woodland and bushland , woodland and shrub savanna at 850 to 2200 m altitude. It occurs widely throughout dryland Africa and it is often dominant.
Description: This is a nice large, cactus-like, candlestick, tree Euphorbia with short thorns. It form a dense crown of ascending branches usually up to 4,5 m tall (but reported to reach 9 m of height ) This is a highly variable species with several forms and making precise descriptions may be difficult.
Stems: Columnar, angular branches, constricted into ovate segment appox 15 cm long,
Ribs: 8 (4 for E. acruensis) very deep, vertical or slightly twisted with thin walls and shallow sinuate teeth 12 mm apart.
Spines: Stipular spines in pairs closely packed (almost touching) on the rib border, triangular up to 7 mm wide and 10 mm long, separate, becoming corky.
Flowers: 1-5 cyathia up to 12 mm wide born together on simple cymes, peduncles up to 5 mm long stout, nectar glands elliptic yellow, almost touching.
Fruits: About 12 x15 mm wide, subglobose, fleshy, white turning red, hardening, becoming deeply lobed at maturity.
Seeds: Smooth, subglobose, 4,5 x 3,5 mm wide,
Remarks: It has a very clean and neat appearance and is often confused with with Euphorbia ammak, Euphorbia ingens and Euphorbia erythraea . Nevertheless this plant is often leafed out, especially if warm and given plenty of water. This makes it easy to tell from , which rarely has leaves, or they are so small and insignificant. Furthermore Euphorbia abyssinica grows more vertical in form than its cousins.
Cultivation and Propagation: It is an easy species to grow that is suited for any well drained soil in full sun. But young plant are happy growing indoors, where they can easily reach the ceiling. Give the plant an airy growing medium which mainly consists of non organic material such us clay, pumice, lava grit, and only a little peat or leaf-mould. Water regularly during the active growing season from March to September. No water should ever be allowed to stand around the roots. Keep almost completely dry in winter. It is a moderately fast grower, and will quickly become large landscape masterpieces in just 3-5 years. Only downside is from strong winds, the columns often smash into each other, causing permanent scarring. best to plant in such a location where winds are not a big issue. If plant becomes very red, this is a sign that the roots have not developed properly. It can tolerate moderate shade, and a plant that has been growing in shade should be slowly hardened off before placing it in full sun as the plant will be severely scorched if moved too suddenly from shade into sun. Like quite small pots, repott in very later winter, early spring. Can be pruned for shape and branching. Frost tender, frost free zones only. It is definitely more tender than Euphorbia ammak or Euphorbia ingens, and slower growing, it will be content in its position and with its soil for years.
Propagation: It is easy to propagate by cuttings in late spring to summer, just take a cutting of the plant let it dry for 1 or 2 weeks and stuff it in the ground (preferably dry, loose, extremely well draining soil).
Warning: All Euphorbias contain a white sap that can be irritating to eyes and mucous membranes. If contact is made with this white sap, take care to not touch face or eyes before washing hands with soap and water.
Gardening: This tree can be grown in large, rocky, well-drained soil in gardens in drier areas. It is very drought resistant but susceptible to frost. It makes one of the better house plants for an Euphorbia, dealing well with low light situations (though recommend higher light if possible). Somewhat user-friendly with only sparse spines along the edges of the plant. Slightly delicate, though, and spines tear off easily, exposing that latexy sap. It is also appreciated as a live fence because it is easily propagated from untreated mature branch cuttings.
Fuel production: The Italians attempted to grow Euphorbia abyssinica in 1935-36 to use its latex to produce a gasoline-like substitute.
Fishing: It is used to stupefy fish, making it possible to catch them by hand. The fish poison is prepared by soaking a bundle of grass in the latex, tying it to a stone and throwing it into the water. Paralysed fish rise to the surface within a short period of time.
Drought-tolerant suitable for xeriscaping
USDA Zone 9b: to -3.8 °C (25 °F)
USDA Zone 10a: to -1.1 °C (30 °F)
USDA Zone 10b: to 1.7 °C (35 °F)
USDA Zone 11: above 4.5 °C (40 °F)
Where to Grow:
Can be grown as an annual
All parts of plant are poisonous if ingested
Handling plant may cause skin irritation or allergic reaction
Soil pH requirements:
By dividing rhizomes, tubers, corms or bulbs (including offsets)
This plant is said to grow outdoors in the following regions:
On Nov 7, 2005, cactus_lover from FSD,
Pakistan (Zone 10b) wrote:
Main stem arises from root forming subglobose body 5-8 cm thick crowned with cylindrical,tuberculate branches 5-10 cm highlanceolate,caducous,green leaves 4-8 mm long.
On Aug 19, 2004, palmbob from Acton, CA (Zone 8b) wrote:
Another medussaform Euphorbia- this one with relatively skinny, knobby, succulent stems from the base caudex. CAn't find information on cold hardiness, but wouldn't be surprised if it has some degree of hardiness.
Euphorbia procumbens – Succulent plants
Euphorbia procumbens is a decorative, small, spineless Medusoid Euphorbia that in its normal form has 2 to 3 rows of lateral shoots around the deepen tip of a swollen succulent base. It is closely related to Euphorbia gorgonis and can be confused with Euphorbia woodii but it is smaller.
Scientific Name: Euphorbia procumbens Mill.
Synonyms: Euphorbia pugniformis, Medusea procumbens, Euphorbia gorgonis (heterotypic synonym)
How to grow and maintain Euphorbia procumbens :
It prefers full to partial sunlight. Provides good sunlight at least 3-5 hours of the day, and turn it regularly so that your plant doesn’t begin to grow lopsided.
It grows well in well-draining, gritty soil or cactus potting mix. They are not particular about soil pH, but they cannot tolerate wet soil.
You can allow the soil to dry out between each watering. Before watering the plant check underneath the pot through the drainage holes to see if the roots are dry. If so then add some water. Do not water too often to prevent overwatering, that can potentially kill it off.
It prefers an optimal temperatures of 60 degrees Fahrenheit – 85 degrees Fahrenheit / 16 degrees Celsius to 29 degrees Celsius.
Fertilize every two weeks with a diluted balanced liquid fertilizer during its growing season in the spring and summer. Avoid fertilizing your plant during the fall and winter months.
It can be easily propagated by cuttings. Take cutting in spring, which needs to be dried out for a couple of weeks in shade before potting. This can be tricky, because of the exuding sap. Rooting hormone is recommended with Euphorbias. Also can be propagated from seed, but they can be difficult to germinate.
Pests and Diseases:
Euphorbia may be susceptible to mealy bugs, scale insects, occasionally spider mites.