Euphorbia milii, which we usually call crown of thorns, is blooming again.


Crown of thorns is a euphorbia that is native to Madagascar but can be found just about everywhere now. It comes in various shades of red, pink, yellow, and white. It is one of those rare succulents that bloom off and on all year, rather than just seasonally like most of them do.


Legend says this plant might be the crown of thorns worn by Christ.


This euphorbia is tolerant to salt and has become a popular outdoor landscape plant in Florida because of that. It is not cold-hardy however, and will freeze in cold temperatures, but the irony of that is that it tends to bloom more in cooler temperatures.


As a group, all euphorbias bleed a white sap when cut that is a bit toxic and can cause irritation when it comes in contact with skin and eyes, and if ingested can cause stomach pain. I don’t tell you this to scare you away from the plant, but to give you a heads up just so you know to be careful when you trim the plant, which you will want to do as it grows and loses leaves down low and looks leggy or just gets too big and needs to be pruned back. I have had these plants for years with no ill effect, so don’t let the sap scare you off.


When you do prune it back, and make your cuts low on the plant, turn the cutting upside down so it won’t bleed out. Let it dry for about 24 hours before you plant it. And pruning it will result in a bushier, fuller plant, so it is worth doing.


Give your crown of thorns good light, water about once a week, and it will reward you with lots of blooms.