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Garden Spurge Euphorbia hirta L.

Other Common Name(s):

Previously known as:

  • Chamaesyce hirta
Description

Spurges are summer annual weeds that flourish in warm weather, but in warmer climates, some can persist into late fall. Plants flower in summer and early fall, then die after frost. Flowers are greenish-white. Spurges are some of the most common warm-season weeds in container nurseries. Each exudes a milky sap when stems or leaves are broken.

Management Guidelines for Spurges: Because spurges flower when young and have little or no seed dormancy, weed populations can increase rapidly. Remove plants when young to reduce seed production. They are time-consuming to hand weed due to the number of seedlings that form. Some species may forcefully discharge seeds. Spurges are well-managed by most preemergence herbicides labeled for use or for spotted spurge control.

This species of Garden Spurge is prostrate to ascending with distinctively uneven leaves and a large seedhead. There are two forms: one with small, light green leaves and one with larger leaves often maroon in color. It is a prolific seeder. Seed have little or no dormancy and germinate quickly. 

Cultivars / Varieties:
Tags:
#sun#full sun#annual#summer#maroon#white flowers#weed#green flowers#bright green#weedy#seedheads#fall interest#summer annual weed#weeds#rapid growth rate#grows fast#sap#late fall#warm weather#maroon leaves#weed control#milky sap#groundcover
 
Cultivars / Varieties:
Tags:
#sun#full sun#annual#summer#maroon#white flowers#weed#green flowers#bright green#weedy#seedheads#fall interest#summer annual weed#weeds#rapid growth rate#grows fast#sap#late fall#warm weather#maroon leaves#weed control#milky sap#groundcover
  • Attributes:
    Genus:
    Euphorbia
    Species:
    hirta L.
    Family:
    Euphorbiaceae
    Life Cycle:
    Annual
  • Whole Plant Traits:
    Plant Type:
    Annual
    Weed
    Habit/Form:
    Ascending
    Prostrate
    Growth Rate:
    Rapid
  • Cultural Conditions:
    Light:
    Full sun (6 or more hours of direct sunlight a day)
  • Flowers:
    Flower Color:
    Green
    Red/Burgundy
    White
    Flower Inflorescence:
    Insignificant
    Flower Bloom Time:
    Fall
    Summer
    Flower Description:
    Tiny flowers are in a ball shape. They are generally green and white but can also have a bit of red.
  • Leaves:
    Leaf Color:
    Green
    Red/Burgundy
    Leaf Type:
    Simple
    Leaf Arrangement:
    Opposite
    Leaf Margin:
    Serrate
    Hairs Present:
    No
    Leaf Length:
    < 1 inch
    Leaf Width:
    < 1 inch
    Leaf Description:
    Leaves are green with uneven stems. Leaves are opposite with small teeth.
  • Stem:
    Stem Is Aromatic:
    No
  • Landscape:
    Problems:
    Weedy