Euphorbia maculata

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Euphorbia maculata

Spotted spurge
Binomial:Euphorbia maculata
Conditions:Sun, no wet soils
Seed Dispersal:Shatters
Vegetative Spread:Prostrate, spreading

Euphorbia maculata, variously called Spotted spurge or Prostrate spurge, is an annual plant in the family Euphorbiaceae, native to North America. It grows in sunny locations and a variety of soils, and frequently found as a weed of gardens and lawns, and can also grow well in the cracks of hardscapes or walls.

Description[edit | edit source]

Euphorbia maculata is a low-growing, spreading, annual plant with reddish stems. The leaves are bluish-green on the margins, and red along the midribs. The flowers are tiny, and are produced within a few weeks of germination, quickly followed by the small seeds.

Ecology[edit | edit source]

Uses[edit | edit source]

Control[edit | edit source]

Early action is crucial with this weed because of the short period between germination and the setting of seeds. The seeds will germinate in wood and stone mulches as well.

  • Mowing: Ineffective due to the low height.
  • Cultivation: Effective, especially for young plants.
  • Pulling: Plants pull easily, as they do not root at the node. They should always be put immediately into a container to prevent seed dispersal.
  • Flame: Very effective, and has the added benefit of killing the seeds.
  • Disposal: This plant should only be composted in hot piles, due the copious seeds.

References[edit | edit source]