This group of plants is extremely varied. Some are large, cactus-like trees and shrubs, while others are ground covers. Poinsettias and crown-of-thorns plants are included in this group. Some can also grow as hardy, herbaceous perennials. That's why I'm excited about Euphorbias!
Euphorbias have the unflattering, common name of spurge, which is derived from the old English word "to purge." It comes from the use of the milky sap as a purgative in medieval times. While many have to be grown as house plants in our climate, there are some that are hardy to zone 4.
Spurge has colorful flowers in late spring and attractive colored foliage. The plant grows in a mound about 18 inches tall and has many varieties. Listen to this podcast of The Vermont Garden Journal to learn more about Euphorbias and the best types of soil to plant them in.
Now for this week's tip: keep planting small patches of bush beans every two weeks until the end of July to stagger your harvest and have fresh beans into the fall.