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Euphorbia globosa, photographed at Tula Plants & Design. Euphorbia globosa, photographed at Tula Plants & Design.

Euphorbia globosa

Botanical Name — Euphorbia globosa

Common Name — Globose Spurge, or Roundish-jointed Spurge

Plant Family — Euphorbiaceae


Background


Originating out of South Africa, Euphorbia globosa is a dwarf succulent made up of odd globular, segmented fingers off a caudiciform (woody root) base. It rarely grows taller than 3 inches, preferring instead to branch out and cover ground up to a foot across. As it grows, older globe leaves callous over and form what looks like a blobby trunk.


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Growth Requirements


Sun

  • Euphorbia globosa does best in full sun, at least 5 to 8 hours a day. Avoid intense afternoon sun. Grow outdoors in light shade or indoors in a sunny window with southern exposure and direct sun. 

Temperature/ Humidity 

  • Euphorbia globosa prefers warm temperatures in the 70s and 80s. It can become stressed if left in conditions of extreme temperatures or intense sun. 
  • These plants are not cold hardy, if grown outdoors migrate these plants to a sunny spot indoors when night time temperatures drop below 55 ºF. 

Water

  • Native to arid and sub-tropical climates Euphorbia globosa are drought tolerant plants. Water sparingly in the summer and only a few times throughout the winter. Their soil should be allowed to dry out entirely before watering thoroughly.

Soil/Roots

  • These plants prefer a sandy, sharply draining mix. Cacti or succulent potting mix is great. You can amend a regular potting soil with sand or pumice up to 50% to improve grittiness and drainage. 


Flowering

  • These plants produce small yellow-green flowers during the spring and summer time. Potted plants and plants grown indoors may not flower.

Fertilization

  • These plants do not require fertilizer though it can be added to give container grown plants a boost or to supplement poor soil. Apply a water-soluble, balanced fertilizer monthly, diluted at half strength. 

Propagation

  • Euphorbia globosa can be propagated from stem cuttings. Take great care when cutting these plants as they contain a sap that can be highly irritant if contacted with skin. 
  • Allow cuttings to callous for several days before dusting with rooting hormone and placing in soil.

Health


Diseases

  • Euphorbia globosa are not prone to pests. Though not super common, they are more likely to fall victim to bacterial or fungal infections. Affected plants may need to be destroyed to prevent the spread of disease to other nearby plants. 
  • Root rot can also be a concern and is triggered by overwatering. Always err on the side of underwatering.

Maintenance (pruning, legginess, repotting)

  • Little maintenance is required to grow these plants. 
  • The deep, bulbous roots of this plant often require a deep pot, but once planted, they will be happy in the same pot for several years. Repot once every two to three years.

Toxicity

  • All Euphorbia plants contain a poisonous sap that is very toxic if ingested and highly irritant if contacted with skin. Keep out of reach of pets and children. Wear gloves and take great care when handling this plant.