Euphorbia x martini
Diverse genus of about 2,000 species, ranging from small flowery annuals to sculptural trees. The flower is technically a cyathium, consisting of fused bracts that form a cup around the much-reduced true flowers. Cyathia may appear singly or in clusters. In some cases, as with poinsettia (E. pulcherrima), additional bracts below provide most of the color. The fruit is usually a dry capsule that releases seeds explosively, shooting them up to several feet away. Many euphorbias are succulents; these often mimic cacti in appearance and are as diverse in form and size.
All euphorbias have milky white sap that is irritating on contact or toxic if ingested (degree of irritation or toxicity varies, depending on the species). Before using cut flowers in arrangements, dip stems in boiling water or hold in a flame for a few seconds to prevent sap bleed. All need well-drained soil.
This perennial is a hybrid between E. amygdaloides and E. characias. Usually misspelled as E. x martinii. Grows to 2–3 ft. tall and wide. Resembles a compact E. characias, with dense clusters of brown-centered chartreuse flowers in late winter and spring. Evergreen leaves are often tinged purple when young. Stems are red in winter. ‘Red Martin’ has leaves held nearly upright, showing off red color of stems and new foliage. Full sun or light shade. Fairly drought-resistant.
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