John&Jacq~s Garden

Euphorbia tithymaloides ‘Variegatus’ is both gorgeous and toxic!

Euphorbia tithymaloides ‘Variegatus’ (Variegated Devil’s Backbone, Jacob’s Ladder, Zig-zag Plant)

A stunning plant with fabulous variegated foliage and attractive pink or red flowers. Its zig-zag stems are an added attraction too.

It is popularly grown for its unique, interesting and curious form.

However,  if you’re one of those people like me who’ll experience skin rashes when in contact with its toxic milky sap, it’s advisable to avoid it at all cost.

On the other hand, if you’re still  desirous for it, just remember to wear gloves when handling it.

Euphorbia tithymaloides with green leaves as shown in the left image, had graced our tropical garden slightly more than a decade ago.

Unfortunately, it had to be removed pronto when it showed its beastly self, causing skin rashes on my palms and hands when I had to prune off some of its straggly stems. Well, I could have worn gloves when handling it but I tend to forget oftentimes and it can be rather cumbersome too.

Therefore, it is a definite no-no for us no matter how beautiful or captivating it is.

We just have to be contented, gazing adoringly at them in other peoples’ garden!

Plant Profile, Culture and Propagation :

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Last edit: June 16, 2016