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Candelilla Euphorbia antisyphilitica


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Alternate name: Wax Plant

Family: Euphorbiaceae, Spurge view all from this family

Description Candelilla is a tufted perennial usually growing 1-1 1/2 ft. tall but occasionally reaching 3 ft. The numerous, rarely branched, waxy stems resemble a cluster of slender, pale-green candles. Tiny, narrow leaves, present only on new growth, fall off early and, along with the flowers, are inconspicuous.

Warning Plants of this genus can be toxic if ingested; known to fatally poison cattle. Contact with plant can cause irritation of skin, eyes, and mucous membranes. Sensitivity to a toxin varies with a personís age, weight, physical condition, and individual susceptibility. Children are most vulnerable because of their curiosity and small size. Toxicity can vary in a plant according to season, the plantís different parts, and its stage of growth; and plants can absorb toxic substances, such as herbicides, pesticides, and pollutants from the water, air, and soil.

Habitat Limey, desert areas.

Range Trans-Pecos, Texas, south to Mexico.

Discussion This plant is in the same genus as the holiday favorite Poinsettia.

Comments This is an effective accent plant because of pale color and columnar shape. Often associated with sotol and lechuguilla.

Exposure Preference Sun.

Native Distribution Trans-Pecos, Texas, s. to Mexico

Site Preference Limey, desert areas

Soil Preference Well-drained, limestone soils.