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Euphorbia grandialata

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Euphorbia grandialata is a very attractive plant that looks somewhat like a yellowish striped Euphorbia cooperi . It is characterized by periods of rapid growth, designated by the wide sections, and minimal growth which are the narrow sections.
 

Description: it is a gorgeous and rare thorny columnar species with a solitary or branched trunk. Upright at first then branching from the base to form a spreading bush. Closely related to E. cooperi, it have a reduced main stems and it is rarely higher than 2 metres whereas E. cooperi var. cooperi forms a definite tree. The branchlets are deciduous and shed continuously as new ones are formed resulting in a bare trunk with irregularly spaced branch scars. The lower branches curve upward giving the tree the shape of a candelabrum.
Stem: The trunk is naked, straight, grey to dark grey, brown or blackish-grey with a gnarled appearance up to 25 cm in diameter. Branchlets 10-12 cm in diameter pale green with marked striping/variegatio conspicuously 4 winged (occasionally 3-6) with characteristic narrowing and widening looking-like a chunky string of beads. The triangular or heart-shaped segments are approx 15 cm long. The segments of young plants usually are much larger than those of older plants that have smaller and somewhat rounded segments.
Spines: About 15-30 mm long, paired that protrude laterally and regularly along the ribs of columns, spine shields forming a continuous ridge. (compare to E. grandicornis spines which are 4-5 cm and protrude at alternate angles in various directions).
Flowers: Petal-less looking like small yellow buttons. Yellowish green, peduncled, small bisexual, arranged in 3 parallel rows along the ridges between the spines on the terminal segments towards the tips of the branches . They are clustered in cymes each with by 3 cyathia with the male flowers at the tip in the centre of the row, and the bisexual flowers below on the outside.
Blooming season: Summer.
 


The branches of E. grandialata show very attractive yellowish markings on the stems.

 
The 4 rib-ridges have continuous, narrow and dark spine shields running along the paired spines.
Family: Euphorbiaceae

Scientific name:  Euphorbia grandialata R. A. Dyer
In: Fl. pl. South Africa 17:641. 1937

Common Names include: Candelabra Tree, Candelabra euphorbia, Spurge, Milkweed.

Origin: Eendemic to the Penge district of the Limpopo Province in the Steelpoort and Olifants River valley.

Habitat: This prefers well-drained soils and is mostly found on rocky hillsides.

Etymology: The species name "grandialata" means “with broad winged structures”

Conservation status: Listed in CITES appendix 2.

 

 


 

Cultivation: It is an easy species to grow that is suited for any well drained soil in full sun. But young plant are happy growing indoors. Give the plant an airy growing medium which mainly consists of non organic material such us clay, pumice, lava grit, and only a little peat or leaf-mould. Water regularly during the active growing season from March to September. No water should ever be allowed to stand around the roots. Keep almost completely dry in winter. It is a moderately fast grower, and will quickly become large landscape masterpieces in just 5-10 years. Only downside is from strong winds, the columns often smash into each other, causing permanent scarring... best to plant in such a location where winds are not a big issue. It is a  long lived plant and once established, it will be content in its position and with its soil for years. It can tolerate moderate shade, and a plant that has been growing in shade should be slowly hardened off before placing it in full sun as the plant will be severely scorched if moved too suddenly from shade into sun. Like quite small pots, repot in very later winter, early spring.  Frost tender, frost free zones only.

Propagation:  It is easy to propagate by cuttings in late spring to summer,  just take a cutting of the plant let it dry for 1 or 2 weeks and stuff it in the ground (preferably dry, loose, extremely well draining soil).

Warning: Warning: All Euphorbias contain a white sap that can be irritating to eyes and mucous membranes. If contact is made with this white sap, take care to not touch face or eyes. If contact is made with this white sap, take care to not touch face or eyes before washing hands with soap and water.

Uses: This tree can be grown in large, rocky, well-drained soil in gardens in drier areas, however, because of the latex and spines, is not advisable for a family garden. It is very drought resistant but susceptible to frost.

 

Photo gallery: Alphabetical listing of Cactus and Succulent pictures published in this site.

Photo gallery EUPHORBIA

 



 

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This old page has been moved! Click the link next on the right to enter the new Enciclopedia of Succulents. We hope you find this new site informative and useful.

Encyclopedia of Succulents