I have a Frank'nSuc ...

by Paul Hobson
(San Francisco)

Bought a little plant (around 3") that's turned into a huge heavy thing (with a trunk) about the size of a soccer ball... so heavy I need to regularly replant just to keep it from falling over (note pencils for scale). The other is small (3" diameter), very brightly colored and seems to be maxed-out size-wise. Need to identify both. Thanx. — Paul

Drought Smart Plants reply:
Hi Paul, those are the most bizarre looking plants - they really do look like a science experiment gone really wrong!

The greenish one is Euphorbia lactea; a crested form, or monstrose abberation. This is a fairly stable mutation, but it's unable to grow very good roots, and is usually grafted, as this one is.

The red one is also a grafted form - the red part, having no green at all, which is the chlorophyll won't be able to live by itself, so is grafted onto the green stem of another species.

More Euphorbia on Dave's Garden website; this link has a similar shaped plant, and the red form is a mutation of one like this.

To stop these top heavy types from tipping over, I recommend planting them in a terracotta clay pot to prevent it.
Happy Euphorbia Growing!

Important Note: All parts of these plants are poisonous, including the milky latex like sap. Exposure to the sap can cause blindness or severe allergic dermatitis. Use caution when handling.

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