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Euphorbia geroldii (Thornless Crown of Thorns)


Scientific Name

Euphorbia geroldii Rauh

Common Names

Thornless Crown of Thorns, Thornless Euphorbia, Gerold's Spurge

Scientific Classification

Family: Euphorbiaceae
Subfamily: Euphorbioideae
Tribe: Euphorbieae
Subtribe: Euphorbiinae
Genus: Euphorbia


Euphorbia geroldii is a beautiful semi-succulent shrub that grows up to 2 feet (60 cm) tall. It has no spines, unlike its thorned cousin Euphorbia milii. Leaves are glossy dark green, up to 3.2 inches (8 cm) long, and up to 1.2 inches (3 cm) wide. Flowers are a coral red with a yellow center. It is almost in constant bloom.

Euphorbia geroldii (Thornless Crown of Thorns)

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USDA hardiness zones 10a to 11b: from 30 °F (−1.1 °C) to 50 °F (+10 °C).

How to Grow and Care

Euphorbias are very easy to care for. These plants require a little pampering to become established, but once they are, they are self-sufficient. More die from too much care and watering than from neglect. Euphorbias need well-draining soil and lots of sunlight. They are not particular about soil pH, but they cannot tolerate wet soil. Unlike most succulents, Euphorbia does not handle long periods of drought well. It may need weekly watering during the summer. Water whenever the soil is dry several inches below the surface. Water deeply, but don't let them sit in wet soil, which can cause root rot. Add some organic matter or fertilizer to the planting hole. If you are growing them in containers or your soil is poor, feed with a half-strength fertilizer monthly.

These succulents can be grown from seed, but they can be difficult to germinate (or even find). They are usually propagated by cuttings. This can be tricky because of the exuding sap. Rooting hormone is recommended with Euphorbias. They tend to grow problem-free, but there are a few pests and diseases to be alert for.

Learn more at How to Grow and Care for Euphorbia.


Euphorbia geroldii is endemic to Madagascar. Its natural habitat is subtropical or tropical dry forests. It is threatened by habitat loss.


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