Euphorbia horrida?

jadegarden(z11 Caribbean)April 14, 2006

I have these both labelled as Euphorbia horrida but now I see the flowers are different. Can anyone tell me whether these are really both horrida? And if not - what?

Thanks for your help.

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biwako_of_abi

I'm not an expert, but my horrida has plenty of spines, so my vote goes to the one in the bottom picture. The other one, maybe E. anoplia? Frank, Euphorbia.de, can you help us?

    Bookmark   April 15, 2006 at 1:26AM
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greenlarry(UK 8/9)

Theyre both fantastic plants!

    Bookmark   April 15, 2006 at 4:48AM
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jadegarden(z11 Caribbean)

Strangely enough, the one at the top is the one I bought with a horrida label - the other one I had before and had IDed as horrida. I figured the first one just looked so pale because of the conditions in the store but now it is growing and has displayed a different flower - hence my question.

    Bookmark   April 15, 2006 at 9:29PM
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baldric(vic aust)

Hello,

Neither ar Euphorbia horridia in my opinion .

The plant on the left is a hybrid of E horridia, known as E.snowflake.I have one.
I also have an E.horridia and it is plain green.

The other plant also seems to be a hybrid of E. horridia but that's just a guess.

Baldric

    Bookmark   April 16, 2006 at 8:36AM
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jadegarden(z11 Caribbean)

I looked up "Snowflake" and found horrida Snowflake and polygona Snowflake. Are these the same, or different?

I saw some E. horrida "Snowflake" photos that do look like mine above (same flowers) so that might be right. But what about polygona?

    Bookmark   April 16, 2006 at 12:51PM
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paracelsus

I think Baldric is right, they are probably hybrids of horrida, or maybe E. polygona. There are quite a few variants of E. horrida on the market today.

Altman's plants sells the blue form shown above as E. polygona 'snowflake'. The second plant does look like a variety of E. horrida, possibly E. horrida nova or E. horrida major nova. Neither is E. anoplia, which is smooth and banded.

Euphorbs produce male or female flowers, so a difference in flower form does not necessarily mean different species.

Hopefully Frank will see this thread and offer a more definitive identification.

    Bookmark   April 16, 2006 at 1:05PM
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baldric(vic aust)

The plant is as far as I know an Euphorbia polygona Snowflake hybrid.

I too looked up E. Horrida snowflake.I agree they look identical.

There is one surefire test however if your plant happens to be male . All you need to do is get a torch go out to your plant at night when there is little or no moon.Then lift you plantvery very gently out of the soil in darkness with two silver[not stainless steel] forks.

Then be ready, quickly flash your torch at its underside.

You may have to do this several times as they are very sensitive to light.

If it is male then you should be able to see whether it has gonads of not. If so it is a polygona.

Of course if it has none that is not the end of the matter ... it may be female.

Paracelsius may be better informed on female snowflakes

Baldric

    Bookmark   April 19, 2006 at 9:10AM
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jadegarden(z11 Caribbean)

Baldric,

Thank you for the advice.

On the names, I have added "Snowflake" to the first, and "variety?" to the second

About the gender - right now I don't so greatly need to know whether it is male or female to attempt that exercise - although I must admit it sounds very interesting and I have noted it for future reference. I presume you have done this successfully, and I am very curious to know why stainless steel would not work just as well as silver.

So, if one happens to be male and the other female and they are side-by-side, do I need to help them out if I wanted to get some hybridisation going? Or does nature take its course?

    Bookmark   April 19, 2006 at 8:59PM
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www_euphorbia_de(Germany)

E. horrida and polygona are hard to tell apart only by body characteristics, at least when the plants are young.
The only certain characteristic is in their cyathia.

Euphorbia horrida bears green cyathia that sometimes may turn brownish with the age.

The cyathia of E. polygona are red to deep purple.

Frank
www.euphorbia.de

    Bookmark   April 23, 2006 at 1:12PM
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jadegarden(z11 Caribbean)

Thanks a lot, Frank.

I was wondering where you were, since I posted this a while back. I knew you would be able to shed some light on this.

Based on your advice, the plant in the first photo would be horrida while the second is polygona. It was the difference in the colour of the cyathia (sorry, I called them flowers) that had me question whether they were both the same species.

Do these plants self-fertilise, or do I need two plants for pollination?

    Bookmark   April 23, 2006 at 2:07PM
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www_euphorbia_de(Germany)

"the plant in the first photo would be horrida while the second is polygona."

... if you start counting from the right hand side!

Like all species in section Acanthothamnos of subfamily Esula, E. horrida and polygona are unisexual plants. That means that there are plants that produce only male cyathia and others that produce only female ones. Thus you need a male as well as a female plant for seed production.

Frank
www.euphorbia.de

    Bookmark   April 23, 2006 at 4:26PM
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jadegarden(z11 Caribbean)

I didn't mean that the way I said it - must have been thinking about something else or counting from the bottom - the first photo is the polygona with the darker cyathia.

And on further research - hope I get this right: the polygona seems to be male and the horrida looks female. Can I cross-pollinate polygona and horrida to get a hybrid? Or do I need a male horrida and a female polygona? (A good excuse to get more plants)

    Bookmark   April 23, 2006 at 5:07PM
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baldric(vic aust)

Frank is correct of course

But if you don't have the flowers to go by, try my method.

As to why you should use only silver forks ,well I should have thought that was obvious.

    Bookmark   April 25, 2006 at 8:52AM
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fishies(Ottawa z4a or 5)

It's not, and I too am wondering... why no silver forks? :)

    Bookmark   April 25, 2006 at 9:35AM
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biwako_of_abi

Baldric: Gold forks would be even better, don't you think? And you didn't mention that the person doing the investigation should be dressed all in black, or at least a very dark maroon or navy, and, preferably, wear a ski mask. People who generally can see pretty well in the dark would also do well to wear sunglasses, as that will give them a better chance of taking the plant by surprise.
After checking the sex of the plant in the prescribed manner, remember to withhold water from the plant for several days or a week, to give any damaged roots time to heal.
But to tell the truth, I shudder to think of all the poor euphs that may have been subjected to this stressful test, just to satisfy their owners' curiosity. I would never do it to mine.

    Bookmark   April 25, 2006 at 11:49AM
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baldric(vic aust)

biwako_of_abi is correct of course

Gold forks will do just as well.

Though I prefer Silver.

The reason of course is STYLE.

One should do all things with STYLE.

    Bookmark   April 25, 2006 at 6:49PM
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