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Tree Euphorbia

Euphorbia lambii

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Tree Euphorbia (Euphorbia lambii) at Roger's Gardens

Tree Euphorbia flowers

Tree Euphorbia flowers

(Photo courtesy of NetPS Plant Finder)

Tree Euphorbia (Euphorbia lambii) at Roger's Gardens

Tree Euphorbia

Tree Euphorbia

(Photo courtesy of NetPS Plant Finder)

Height:  8 feet

Spread:  8 feet

Sunlight:  full sun  partial shade  full shade 

Hardiness Zone:  9b

Other Names:  Euphorbia bourgaeana, Euphorbia lambiorum


A unique succulent plant with a thick gray main trunk and leafless lower stems crowned with pompom clusters of narrow blue-green leaves; flower bracts are massed and showy atop the leaves; adds a truly exotic dimension to the garden

Ornamental Features

Tree Euphorbia has masses of beautiful clusters of lime green flowers with buttery yellow overtones and chartreuse bracts held atop the branches from late winter to mid spring, which are most effective when planted in groupings. It has attractive bluish-green evergreen foliage. The succulent narrow leaves are highly ornamental and remain bluish-green throughout the winter.

Landscape Attributes

Tree Euphorbia is an open multi-stemmed evergreen shrub with an upright spreading habit of growth. Its average texture blends into the landscape, but can be balanced by one or two finer or coarser trees or shrubs for an effective composition.

This is a relatively low maintenance shrub, and should only be pruned after flowering to avoid removing any of the current season's flowers. Deer don't particularly care for this plant and will usually leave it alone in favor of tastier treats. It has no significant negative characteristics.

Tree Euphorbia is recommended for the following landscape applications;

  • Accent
  • Rock/Alpine Gardens
  • General Garden Use
  • Container Planting

Planting & Growing

Tree Euphorbia will grow to be about 8 feet tall at maturity, with a spread of 8 feet. It has a low canopy with a typical clearance of 2 feet from the ground, and is suitable for planting under power lines. It grows at a fast rate, and under ideal conditions can be expected to live for approximately 15 years.

This shrub performs well in both full sun and full shade. It prefers dry to average moisture levels with very well-drained soil, and will often die in standing water. It is considered to be drought-tolerant, and thus makes an ideal choice for xeriscaping or the moisture-conserving landscape. It is not particular as to soil pH, but grows best in sandy soils. It is highly tolerant of urban pollution and will even thrive in inner city environments. This species is not originally from North America, and parts of it are known to be toxic to humans and animals, so care should be exercised in planting it around children and pets. It can be propagated by cuttings.

Tree Euphorbia makes a fine choice for the outdoor landscape, but it is also well-suited for use in outdoor pots and containers. With its upright habit of growth, it is best suited for use as a 'thriller' in the 'spiller-thriller-filler' container combination; plant it near the center of the pot, surrounded by smaller plants and those that spill over the edges. It is even sizeable enough that it can be grown alone in a suitable container. Note that when grown in a container, it may not perform exactly as indicated on the tag - this is to be expected. Also note that when growing plants in outdoor containers and baskets, they may require more frequent waterings than they would in the yard or garden.

Hardiness Zone Plant Height Minimum Sunlight
Accent  Rock  Garden  Container 
Flowers  Foliage Color  Plant Form 
Ornamental Features