About Flowering Spurge: The common name of this particular species is derived from the French word “espurgier,” which means “to purge,” in reference to the plant’s historical use as an herb to cleanse the body. The Euphorbia genus includes a wide variety of plants including poinsettias and many succulent, low growing plants. The name Euphorbia honors the physician of an ancient African king, Juba II. This king’s personal physician, Euphorbus, used a plant from this family to heal the king.
Flowering Spurge Germination: Direct sow in late fall, pressing the seeds into the surface of the soil. For spring planting, mix the seed with moist sand and store it in the refrigerator for 30 days before sowing; keep it consistently moist until germination. Seedlings do not transplant well because of their developing taproots. This plant adapts well to areas with rocky or sandy soil.
Growing Flowering Spurge Seeds: Keep seedlings watered until they have become established; they grow rather slowly because of their developing taproots. Mature plants have good drought resistance and prefer dry soil, though watering in especially dry periods will increase the amount of blooms. This plant does not need rich soil, and generally grows well in poor soil because of the decreased competition. After several years of growth, the plants can be divided in times of fall or spring dormancy. This plant attracts bees and resists deer.
Harvesting Flowering Spurge: For fresh flowers, cut long stems of flowers that have just opened and place them in water immediately; strip the leaves that will fall below the water. Keep in mind that the stems contain a milky white sap that is slightly toxic and irritating to the skin.
Saving Flowering Spurge Seeds: This plant produces small pods that will split and expel their seed when completely ripe. Gather the pods as soon as they begin to dry, but before they split. Spread the pods out to dry in a protected location, keeping in mind that they may still explode. Separate the seed from the husks. Store the seed in a cool, dry place.
Detailed Flowering Spurge Info: Origin: US Native Other Common Names: Prairie Baby's Breath Duration: Perennial Bloom Time: Summer Height: 24-36 inches Spacing: 18-24 inches Light: Full Sun to Part Shade Soil Moisture: Medium to Dry USDA Zone: 4a-7b Seeds Per Oz: 8,000 Produces a plant with narrow, oblong 2” leaves and open clusters of tiny, five-petaled white flowers.