Crown of Thorns
Description : Euphorbia milii is a thorny, much branched, semi-succulent shrub to ca. 1.5-1.8 m tall, branches covered with spines. It is semi-prostrate or somewhat climbing and quickly forms a low dense hedge which can be easily trimmed without harming the plant. It is widely grown in the tropics as an ornamental for the bright pink bracts that resemble, from a distance, geraniums. Bracts of this beautiful shrub which is seldom out of bloom come naturally in bright pink.
Height: 1.5 - 1.8 m
Light: Euphorbia prefers full sun in well drained soil and tolerates dry conditions as well as coastal exposure.. This plant will grow well on east/west and south facing windows. Euphorbia milli can get leggy and the higher the light, the better the plant growth and flowering habit.
Water: This plant can thrive on neglect. It can tolerate dry soil pretty well. Overall it has lower to medium watering requirements. Don t let the soil be soggy, as your plant will most likely rot. The plant prefer a bit more frequent watering than typical succulent plant. Also, avoid getting water on the leaves and stems because they can rot if they get too wet.
Humidity: Crown of Thorns is very tolerant of dry environments and is not needy in any way. It s pretty much indifferent to the humidity level as you can just as well grow it next to higher humidity plant.
Temperature: Growth may cease completely below 70 F, but will resume when warmer weather returns.
Soil: Likes poor, sandy soil that drains well
Fertilizer: Feed every 2 weeks a balanced liquid fertilizer and in winters at half-strength every month. .
Caution: Crown of Thorns sap is poisonous and can be a skin irritant so be careful when trimming or reporting the plant. If you are making cuttings you can use cold water to stop the oosing of the sap from both the plant and the cutting.
For watering cacti, the golden rule is to make sure the soil is completely dry before watering! This will stop the roots from rotting. It is advised to always use a pot with a drainage hole so that excess water can get drained out. If kept in a sunny area, you will need to water it once every week. If it is in a semi shaded or filtered light area, you might need to water it once in 2 weeks.
Cacti like soil that is well aerated and fast draining. You can fertilise the cactus in the summer months when it is in its growing season. During the winters it is best to cut back on any fertiliser and let the plant rest.
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