Botanical Name — Euphorbia susannae
Common Name — Suzanne’s Spurge
Plant Family — Euphorbiaceae
Endemic to South Africa, Euphorbia susannae thrives in rocky open plains or sheltered in the shade of taller brush. Its clusters of circular stems often branch to form a half-sphere themselves, giving the whole plant a knobular cushion look. In the wild, these plants are sometimes cryptic, meaning most of the plant lives entirely underground with only the tips of its stems pushing through the sandy surface.
- Euphorbia susannae does best in full sun, 4 to 5 hours a day. Avoid intense afternoon sun. Grow outdoors in light shade or indoors in a sunny window with southern exposure and direct sun.
- It’s best to mimic this plant’s natural habitat growing under taller bushes by providing filtered or dappled light during the hottest parts of the day.
- Euphorbia susannae 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.
- Native to arid and sub-tropical climates, Euphorbia susannae are drought tolerant plants. Water when the soil dries out in the summer and only a few times throughout the winter. Their soil should be allowed to dry out entirely before watering thoroughly.
- 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.
- Euphorbia susannae produce small yellow-green flowers during the spring and summer time.
- 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.
- Euphorbia susannae 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.
- Euphorbia susannae 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.
- This plant loves to be rootbound in a pot. Once planted, they will be happy in the same pot for several years. Repot once every two to three years.
- 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.