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Plant Details

Euphorbia cyathophora [= Euphorbia heterophylla; see Notes, below]

Wild Poinsettia, Painted Leaf, Fire-on-the-Mountain, Fiddler's Spurge, Mexican Fireplant

Scientific Name:

Euphorbia cyathophora [= Euphorbia heterophylla; see Notes, below]

Common Name:

Wild Poinsettia, Painted Leaf, Fire-on-the-Mountain, Fiddler's Spurge, Mexican Fireplant

Plant Family

Euphorbiaceae (Spurge Family)

Native/Alien:

NC Native

Type:

Herb/Wildflower

Bloom Color(s):

Green, Red (the red from the leaves surrounding the cyathia)

Size in Feet:

3

Light:

Part-sun, Shade

Soil Moisture:

Mesic(*)

Bloom Time:

June - July - August - September - October

Bloom Area:

Statewide (Mountains, Piedmont, Coast)

Habitat Description:

Disturbed habitats, dunes. Uncommon on the NC Coastal Plain; rare in the NC Mountains and Piedmont, where it is probably not native.

State Rank:

No NC Rank Listed (*)

Global Rank:

No Global Rank listed (*)

State Status:

No NC Status Listed (*)

Federal Status:

No U.S. Status Listed (*)

Notes:

Wild Poinsettia is also known as Fire-on-the-mountain and has been considered, Euphorbia cyathophora, Euphorbia graminifolia, Euphorbia barbellata, Euphorbia heterophylla, and has sometimes been placed in the genus Poinsettia. Although it has been recorded statewide (including in the mountains), it is more commonly seen in the sandy coastal plain; Weakley (2015) considers it native on the NC Coastal Plain, non-native in the NC Piedmont and Mountains.
The showy parts of the plant are not the flowers, but the red bracteal leaves. The plant can become weedy and sometimes loses the showy color.

Plant in Bloom

The blooms are actually small and are above the colorful bracts.

image

Plant

image

George Walls

Seed pod close up

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George Walls

Links:

USDA PLANTS Database Record

https://www.wildflower.org/plants/result.php?id_plant=EUCY
Bird-Friendly Native Plants



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