Project Description

Euphorbia echinus succulent care and propagation information card

Euphorbia echinus

This spiny succulent could easily be mistaken for a cactus. Its green branches have between 5 to 8 ribs. Each rib has spins along its ridges. As it grows, it spreads out, creating a shrub-like bush. Watch for dark red flowers.

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Quick Look:
  • Full sun to partial shade

  • Not suited for indoor growing

  • Typical water needs for a succulent. Do not water in the Winter.

  • Plant grows up to 4′ (1.2 m) tall

    Plant grows up to 3′ (.9 m) wide

  • Zone 10a (Minimum 30° F | -1.1° C)

  • Not cold hardy

  • Propagation by stem cuttings and seeds

  • Can be toxic to humans and animals

  • Actively grows in Spring and Fall

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Care and Propagation Information

General Care for Euphorbia echinus

Euphorbia echinus is a great addition to rock gardens or planters. As it grows, it spreads out as a small shrub.


Euphorbia echinus has typical watering needs for a succulent. It’s best to use the “soak and dry” method, and allow the soil to dry out completely between waterings. Do not water in the Winter when it is dormant.

Where to Plant

Euphorbia echinus is not cold hardy, so if you live in a zone that gets colder than 30° F (-1.1° C), it’s best to plant this succulent in a container that can be brought indoors. It does well in full to partial sun.

Plant in an area of your garden that gets 6 hours of sunlight a day.

Pairs Well With

Euphorbia cooperi “Candelabra Tree”

How to Propagate Euphorbia echinus

Euphorbia echinus can be propagated from stem cuttings or seeds.


To grow Euphorbia echinus from cuttings, follow the directions in this post to learn how to handle a cactus safely.

To remove a stem for propagation, you will need nitrile dipped glovessilicone tongs, and a sharp knife.

Using the tongs, gently pull one of the cylindrical stems away from the main cluster. If you are not able to break it off without pulling up the rest of the plant, use the knife to cut through the stem.

Allow the end of the stem to callous over for several days before placing in well-draining soil.


Seeds can be collected from the fruit of a mature Euphorbia echinus. Sow your seeds in a well-draining soil. You can grow Euphorbia seeds outdoors if you live in an zone above 9a. If you live in a cooler area, you can begin sowing indoors under a grow light or on a seed mat.

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