Beautiful, versatile and slug-resistant – every garden can make room for a euphorbia or two.
The boon of growing many euphorbias is for the zingy, evergreen colour they provide. In spring and summer, many will provide bright, colourful blooms, while the foliage of others will turn rich coppery tones in autumn. There are even euphorbias you can grow as houseplants – just take a look at Euphorbia tirucalli.
Of course, euphorbias are mercifully slug-resistant, too, so you don't have to worry about holy leaves and flowers. Check out more slug-resistant plants to grow. To boost your stock of plants, simply take euphorbia cuttings.
Discover 10 of the best euphorbias to grow, below.
Euphorbia myrsinites is a gorgeous euphorbia with prostrate stems cloaked in waxy blue-green leaves. It'll look fantastic planted in a coastal or gravel garden alongside plants like thyme, lavender and bearded irises.
Euphorbia cyparissias, the Cypress spurge, has pretty narrow leaves, with heads of bright green flowers. Try using this low-growing, deciduous euphorbia to edge paths and for ground cover.
This euphorbia species is commonly known as baby's breath euphorbia, though you're more likely to encounter the cultivar 'Diamond Frost' than the pure species. Well-suited to summer containers in full sun. Find out how to use 'Diamond Frost' in a pelargonium and salvia container.
Euphorbia ceratocarpa has a well-deserved reputation for being one of the longest-flowering perennials to grow. It has a more airy, sprawling growth habit compared with other euphorbias and blends well with plants like Verbena bonariensis and hardy geraniums, to form frothy mounds of colour.
Euphorbia characias subsp. wulfenii
Euphorbia characias subsp. wulfenii is a large, architectural plant, with attractive blue-green foliage and lime green flowers in spring and summer. Grow it in full sun in moist, well-drained soil and try growing it alongside kniphofias, sisyrinchiums and purple wallflowers.
Euphorbia x martini
This evergreen hybrid has mid-green foliage, large, showy flower bracts from mid-spring to August. For best results, grow Euphorbia x martini in full sun, in well-drained soil – a gravel garden is ideal. Once of the best known cultivars to grow is 'Ascot Rainbow' (pictured).
Euphorbia epithymoides (syn. Euphorbia polychroma) is a small, well-behaved species that produces neat mounds of foliage and bright yellow-green flowers in spring. The foliage then turns a warm bronze colour in autumn. Grow it in full sun or partial shade, in moist, well-drained soil. For variegated foliage, check out the cultivar 'First Blush'.
Euphorbia x pasteurii
Euphorbia x pasteurii was produced by crossing Euphorbia stygiana and Euphorbia mellifera. The evergreen foliage is a beautiful deep green and, from April to July, honey-scented blooms appear. Grow this fully hardy euphorbia in full sun and well-drained soil.
This striking euphorbia has blazing red flower bracts in the summer months, growing best in moist, well-drained soils in partial shade. Euphorbia griffithii cultivars to grow include 'Fireglow' and 'Dixter'.
Euphorbia amygdaloides var. robbiae
If you're struggling to plant up areas of dry shade, under trees for example, consider Euphorbia amygdaloides var. robbiae. Its forms a low, weed smothering carpet and the acid green blooms combine well with deep purples, like those of Geranium phaeum 'Raven'.
Pruning and handling euphorbias
Be careful not to get any euphorbia sap on your skin or in your eyes, as it is an irritant – wear gloves. Discover how to prune euphorbias.