Scientific: Euphorbia antisyphilitica
Family: Euphorbiaceae (poinsettia family)
Origin: Chihuahuan Desert from west Texas south into Mexico (Durango, Chihuahua and Coahuila).
Pronounciation: U-FOR-bee-a an-ti-se-fi-li-TI-ca
Landscape Use: Excellent accent plant for small desert, rock and succulent gardens, narrow planters.
Form & Character: Densely upright, erect, stiff, and formal, with a hint of free-spiritedness.
Growth Habit: Herbaceous perennial that profusely clumps. Rarely taller than 30 inches in height.
Foliage/Texture: Generally leafless, stems pencil thick, grayish green, stiff and branched; medium texture.
Flowers & Fruits: Striking small terminal flowers that have a pinkish-red center becoming cream on the fringe. Seasonal Color: Flowers profusely in spring and early summer.
Temperature: Tolerant of Phoenix conditions.
Light: Full sun to partial shade.
Soil: Very heat tolerant, hardy to 28oF.
Watering: Infrequently irrigate to promote spreading growth.
Pruning: Not needed except to divide clumps every 3 to 5 years.
Propagation: Seed, division and separation of clumps.
Disease and Pests: None.
Additional comments: This is a small perennial that probably deserves greater landscape use. Plants in the genus Euphorbia produce white milky latex that is a skin irritant to some people - so wear gloves when handling alot. The wax is harvested commercially in Mexico for a multitude of uses. The species names comes from the folk lore that the plant is effective for treatment of venereal disease. The common name means 'little candle', referring to the appearance of the stems.