Euphorbia

Cypress spurge Euphorbia cyparissias, from here.


Belongs within: Euphorbiaceae.

Euphorbia is a very large genus of flowering plants, most diverse in drier parts of the tropics. Species are diverse in appearance, including herbs, trees and cactus-like succulents. Some species are popular ornamentals, such as the poinsettia Euphorbia pulcherrima, though the latex sap of species in this genus can be noticeably caustic. Notable species include the petty spurge E. peplus, a native of Europe and western Asia that has become naturalised in many other parts of the world including North America and Australasia.

Characters (from Ma & Gilbert): Herbs (annual, biennial, or perennial), shrubs, or trees, very rarely subscandent, sometimes rhizomatous, monoecious or, rarely in Flora area, dioecious; indumentum of simple hairs, often absent, all parts with abundant white, very rarely yellow, latex; roots fibrous or tuberous. Stems sometimes succulent, terete or variously winged or tuberculate. Leaves alternate or opposite, rarely verticillate; stipules present or not, sometimes modified into glands or prickles; petiole often ill-defined to absent; leaf blade usually entire, sometimes serrulate or dentate. Inflorescence a flowerlike cyathium, single or often several in terminal or axillary, dichasial or monochasial cymes often in a "pseudumbel" with a terminal, more or less sessile cyathium subtended by a whorl of pedunculate cymes, each subtended by an involucral leaf; cyathium consisting of a bowl-shaped to tubular involucre subtended by a pair of bracts, "cyathophylls," enclosing several clusters of male flowers and 1 central female flower, occasionally cyathia unisexual, involucre margin with 4 or 5 lobes, cyathial glands (1-)4 or 5(-7), mostly alternating with involucral lobes, sometimes with petaloid appendages or a pair of horns. Male flower reduced to a single stamen, with an articulation at junction of pedicel and filament, subtended by slender bracteoles. Female flower pedicellate, reduced to a single ovary, rarely subtended by a very reduced perianth; ovary 3-loculed; ovules 1 per locule; styles 3, free, sometimes partly connate; stigma 2-lobed or not, more or less capitate. Fruit a capsule, breaking into 3 2-valved cocci, dehiscence usually explosive, very rarely almost indehiscent. Seeds 1 per locule, globose to ovoid or more or less cylindric; caruncle present or not; endosperm abundant; cotyledons large.

<==Euphorbia Linnaeus 1753 A61 [incl. Chamaesyce E03; Euphorbioideae]
    |--E. abyssinica DL07
    |--E. acanthothamnos S98
    |--E. acaulis KJ05
    |--E. albomarginata BT72
    |--E. alsiniflora LK14
    |--E. amygdaloides HH03
    |--E. angrae CV06
    |--E. antiquorum P88
    |--E. armstrongiana LK14
    |--E. atoto H09
    |--E. baliola CV06
    |--E. balsamifera GC05
    |--E. bifida LK14
    |--E. biglandulosa P93
    |--E. caducifolia PP07
    |--E. calyptrata P93
    |--E. caperonioides CV06
    |--E. chamaesyce Y98
    |--E. chamaesycoides CV06
    |--E. characias C55a
    |--E. cibdela CV06
    |--E. clarkeana PP07
    |--E. cyathophora LK14
    |--E. cyparissias C55b
    |--E. cyparissioides P93
    |--E. damarana CV06
    |--E. deflexa Sibthorp & Smith 1809 PL04
    |--E. dendroides P05
    |--E. drummondii KM08
    |--E. dulcis C55b
    |--E. epithymoides DL07
    |--E. esula C55b
    |--E. exigua PT98
    |--E. friedrichiae CV06
    |--E. giessii CV06
    |--E. glauca Forst. f. 1786 A61
    |--E. granulata PP07
    |--E. guyoniana P93
    |--E. helioscopia C55b
    |--E. heterophylla AGF98
    |--E. heyneane PP07
    |--E. himalayensis O88
    |--E. hirta PP07 [=Chamaesyce hirta ACW01]
    |--E. hypericifolia C55b [=Chamaesyce hypericifolia J87]
    |--‘Chamaesyce’ hyssopifolia MM96
    |--E. indica PP07
    |--E. insarmentosa CV06
    |--E. juttae CV06
    |--E. kaokoensis CV06
    |--E. kimberleyensis LK14
    |--E. lathyris C55b
    |--E. lavrani CV06
    |--E. leistneri CV06
    |--E. leucocephala MM96
    |--E. maculata GR98
    |--E. mauritanica CV06
    |    |--E. m. var. mauritanica CV06
    |    `--E. m. var. foetens CV06
    |--E. mitchelliana LK14
    |--E. monteiroi CV06
    |    |--E. m. ssp. monteiroi CV06
    |    `--E. m. ssp. brandbergensis CV06
    |--E. myrtoides LK14
    |--E. namibensis CV06
    |--E. namuskluftensis CV06
    |--E. neriifolia J07
    |--E. nicaeensis F05
    |--E. origanoides C55b [=Chamaesyce origanoides C79]
    |--E. otjipembana CV06
    |--E. palustris ZB01
    |--E. paralias C74
    |--E. peplus Linnaeus 1753 PL04
    |--E. pergracilis CV06
    |--E. pilulifera C55b
    |--E. platyphyllos C55b
    |--E. plumerioides LK14
    |--E. portlandica V09
    |--E. prostrata GR98
    |--E. pseudoduseimata CV06
    |--E. pulcherrima MH98
    |--E. regis-jubae P93
    |--E. rudis CV06
    |--E. salicifolia C55b
    |--E. schizolepis LK14
    |--E. schultzii LK14
    |--E. serpens GR98
    |--E. sharkoensis KM08
    |--E. spartaria CV06
    |--E. spinea CV06
    |--E. stracheyi O88
    |--E. tannensis KM08
    |    |--E. t. ssp. tannensis KM08
    |    `--E. t. ssp. eremophila KM08
    |--E. taurinensis PT98
    |--E. terracina P93
    |--E. thymifolia PP07
    |--E. tirucalli DP72
    |--E. tortilis RS02
    |--E. variegata PT01
    |--E. venenata CV06
    |--E. verruculosa CV06
    `--E. volkmanniae CV06

*Type species of generic name indicated

REFERENCES

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