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Since the milkweed species cope in nature in a variety of locations, you will find the right kind for every garden situation. In the sunny pebble bed, prairie garden or rock garden with well-drained soil, for example, the roller-spurge oil feels very well. The native cypress spurge (Euphorbia cyparissias) and the steppe spurge (Euphorbia seguieriana sp. Niciciana) also thrive on dry sites. In the perennial border, the yellow-green flower of the steppe-spurge forms a nice contrast to purple-flowering species such as blue lavender (Perovskia atriplicifolia) or catnip (Nepeta racemosa). Lower species are also suitable as groundcover, for example the Balkan spurge (Euphorbia amygdaloides ssp. Robbiae) or the purple cypress spurge (Euphorbia cyparissias 'Fens Ruby'). Tropical species such as the poinsettia feel most comfortable in a warm and humid, bright place in the conservatory. But they are usually disposed of after Christmas, as they are to bring as short-day plants only with great effort to flower again.


For more sensitive species such as the impressive Mediterranean spurge (Euphorbia characias sp. Wulfenii), a spring planting is recommended so that they are well rooted until the first winter.

Fire spurge Euphorbia

The spurge (Euphorbia griffithii 'Fireglow') bears bright orange bracts in May

To cut

The cut varies from species to species. The foliage of deciduous species such as the steppe-spurge should remain over winter, as it is an additional winter protection for the plant. Winter and evergreen species need no pruning.


Towards the end of winter you can share the species of milkweed. This is sometimes quite difficult because of the somewhat woody roots. In this case, the division often succeeds only with a sharp knife. To rejuvenate the division is not necessary because almost all types of nature are long-lived.

Winter protection or wintering

Before the first frost, you should cover planted delicate spurge species with foliage or spruce in the bed. Wintergreen spurge species need winter protection in frosty conditions, especially frosty conditions, and should not be exposed to direct winter sunshine. Species such as the poinsettia or the thorn thorn can go outside at temperatures above 15° C, but as soon as it gets colder, they must return to the house.

Milkweed Euphorbia Mediterranean

The Mediterranean spurge (Euphorbia characias sp. Wulfenii) is a bit frost-sensitive

further care tips

Whether splitting or pruning: Regardless of which care work is performed on the spurge, always wear gloves to prevent skin irritation. This is especially true for spined specimens such as the Christ's thorn.


Spurge is increased by sowing (usually self-sowing) or division. Varieties are also propagated in spring by head or shoot cuttings, as the offspring are otherwise not sorted. The cuttings should be placed in a bucket or bowl of lukewarm water immediately after cutting to allow the milk to drain off. Otherwise it can happen that the dried juice hinders the rooting.

Diseases and pests

The species of milkweed can be affected by powdery mildew, thrips, rust and aphids. Amazingly, even nudibranchs can not be deterred by the poisonous milk juice in some perennials.

Video Board: How To Get Rid of Spotted Spurge in Lawn and Landscape.

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