Submitted by: Jim Tanner
This month’s ‘Plant of The Month’ Succulent is Euphorbia from Madagascar. These are plants that are endemic only to the island of Madagascar.
Some of the most interesting euphorbias come from Madagascar.
Although many euphorbias are very easy to grow, some are very difficult, turning immediately to mush when over watered, or watered out of season. Care must be given in watering, keeping them warm and wet while growing, and cooler and dry when dormant. They do best in an open potting mix, with equal parts of pumice, sand and an organic component, or commercial potting soil. Protection in a greenhouse or even a garage for a month or two in the middle of the winter will greatly increase the survival rate.
Most euphorbias are easy to propagate. The green stems can be removed, left to dry for at least week or even a bit more, and then replanted. The newly planted stems take a few weeks to establish, and then start growing.
LATIN LOOKUP – Loquerisne Latine (Do you speak Latin)?
The meanings of latin plant names on this page – from http://davesgarden.com/guides/botanary/
- ambovombensis [am-boh-vom-BEN-sis]
Of or from Ambovombe (Madagascar).
- cylindrifolia [sil-Iin-drih-FOH-lee-uh]
Having leaves that are cylindrical or slightly tapering.
- Euphorbia [yoo-FOR-bee-uh]
Named for Euphorbus, Greek physician to Juba II, King of Mauretania.
- francoisii [fran-KOY-see-eye]
For E. Francois, who owned the farm near Fort Dauphin, Madagascar where the Euphorbia taxon was first discovered.
- leuconeura [loo-koh-NOOR-uh, loo-koh-NYUR-uh]
White veined (or nerved).
- milii [MIL-ee-eye]
Named for M. le baron Milius, Governor of Isle Bourbon, present-day Isle de la Reunion (Reunion Island).
- primulifolia [prim-yoo-lih-FOH-lee-uh]
Having flowers like a Primula (primrose).