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Cushion Spurge

Category:

An attractive mounding variety ideal for borders, beds and containers; dense, flattened yellow flowers make their appearance in the spring months; medium green foliage develops into an elegant red in the cooler fall weather; self-seeding

Characteristics

Species:
polychroma
Average Landscape Height:
18 inches
Average Landscape Width:
24 inches
Genus:
Euphorbia
Branching:
herbaceous
Plant Form:
mounded
Canopy:
low
Growth Rate:
medium
Pruning:
prune after flowering
Flower Color:
yellow
Flower Period:
from mid to late spring
Summer Foliage Color:
green
Fall Color:
brick red
Maximum Light:
full sun
Minimum Light:
partial shade
Maximum Moisture:
moist
Minimum Moisture:
dry
Pollution Tolerance:
high

Ornamental Features

Cushion Spurge has masses of beautiful cymes of yellow flowers with chartreuse bracts at the ends of the stems from mid to late spring, which are most effective when planted in groupings. Its narrow leaves are green in color. As an added bonus, the foliage turns a gorgeous brick red in the fall.

Landscape Attributes

Cushion Spurge is an herbaceous perennial with a mounded form. Its medium texture blends into the garden, but can always be balanced by a couple of finer or coarser plants for an effective composition.

Planting & Growing

Cushion Spurge will grow to be about 18 inches tall at maturity, with a spread of 24 inches. It grows at a medium rate, and under ideal conditions can be expected to live for approximately 10 years. As an herbaceous perennial, this plant will usually die back to the crown each winter, and will regrow from the base each spring. Be careful not to disturb the crown in late winter when it may not be readily seen!

This plant does best in full sun to partial shade. It is very adaptable to both dry and moist growing conditions, but will not tolerate any standing water. It is considered to be drought-tolerant, and thus makes an ideal choice for a low-water garden or xeriscape application. It is not particular as to soil pH, but grows best in sandy soils. It is highly tolerant of urban pollution and will even thrive in inner city environments. This species is not originally from North America, and parts of it are known to be toxic to humans and animals, so care should be exercised in planting it around children and pets. It can be propagated by cuttings.

Cushion Spurge is a fine choice for the garden, but it is also a good selection for planting in outdoor pots and containers. It is often used as a 'filler' in the 'spiller-thriller-filler' container combination, providing a mass of flowers against which the thriller plants stand out. Note that when growing plants in outdoor containers and baskets, they may require more frequent waterings than they would in the yard or garden.

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