euphorbia

One of the most dramatic plants for your garden, Euphorbia offer a diversity of height, form, color and habit. The genus is expansive, including more than 2,000 species of herbaceous perennials, annuals, biennials, as well as evergreen and deciduous shrubs and trees. There are many varieties perennial here in the Pacific Northwest.

As winter turns to spring, perennial Euphorbias start the show with a wow of blooms. Fluffy spires of chartreuse, apple green, cream or gold touched with red punctuate the land scape well into May. As the evergreen Euphorbias begin to fade, Euphorbia 'Excalibur' burst into color with it's vibrant foliage and golden blooms.

Spurges come in a variety of sizes ranging from the 4-5' E. characais 'Wulfenii' to the 12-18" groundcover E. polychroma. These versatile perennials can be used as a specimen plant, in borders, containers, mass plantings and rock gardens. Their mostly evergreen nature and drought tolerance make them particularly useful for hot, dry areas.

Euphorbia

It is important to note, Euphorbias ooze a white sap when cut or broken. This sap is toxic to the skin and eyes. It is important to wear gloves when working with Euphorbia. Since Euphorbia are toxic when ingested, they are deer resistant.

Euphorbias are valued for their whorled leaves, with colors ranging from bluish-green to variegated green colors all the way to dark bronze-purple. Typical perennial Euphorbia require a sunny location with well drained soil that is protected from frost and wind. The Pacific Northwest, having been compared to a Mediterranean climate because of the dry summers, is a great place to grow Euphorbia. They combine nicely with sedums, ornamental grasses, Verbena and Gaillardia.

Worth noting is that some kinds of Euphorbia prolifically self-seed. Euphorbia myrsinites (donkey tail spurge) reseeds so severely it is on the Oregon noxious weed list, thereby carried at Oregon nurseries.

Varieties of perennial Euphorbia commonly for sale at Portland Nursery include:

Euphorbia characias subsp. wulfenii in Jardin des Plantes 12

Euphorbia characais 'Wulfenii'

Evergreen, blue-green foliage.

Huge chartreuse blooms March to June.

Grows 4'+ tall and wide, reseeds prolifically.

Zones 6-11.

Euphorbia x martinii 'Ascot Rainbow'

Euphorbia x martinii 'Ascot Rainbow'

Stunning tricolor foliage, colors intensify in cold weather.

Creamy flowers marbled with green March to May.

Grows 24-36" tall by 18-24" wide

Zones 5-9.

Euphorbia martinii 'Red Wing'

Euphorbia x martinii ‘Redwing’

Evergreen, growing 20" tall by 20" wide

Blue-grey foliage, with contrasting deep red flower buds in late winter.

Gold blooms March through April.

Zones 6-11.

Euphorbia 'Blackbird'

Euphorbia ‘Blackbird’

Distinctive dark-purple evergreen foliage topped by yellow-green flowers March to May.

Compact form growing 18-22" tall and wide.

Zones 6-9.

Euphorbia 'Shorty'

Euphorbia ‘Shorty’

Compact, sturdy form, growing to only 18" tall and wide.

Evergreen blue-green foliage with chartreuse flowers March to May.

Great in pots or at the front of the border.

Zone 7.

Euphorbia 'Glacier Blue'

Euphorbia ‘Glacier Blue’

Compact growing 12-15" tall by 15" wide

Lovely cream-edged blue green foliage and flower bracts in March to May.

Zones 7-9.

Euphorbia polychroma 'Bonfire'

Euphorbia polychroma 'Bonfire'

A deciduous, low growing Euphorbia reaching 24" tall and wide.

Deciduous with stunning burgundy foliage.

Bright yellow bracts May to June.

Zones 7-11.

Euphorbia rigida 1c

Euphorbia rigida

Distinctive pointed, blue evergreen foliage

Apple green blooms March to May.

Grows 18-24" tall and wide with a relaxed, sweeping habit.

Zone 8.

Find the Best Perennials for your Garden

We have a wonderful selection of perennials year round, but if you are looking for a specific perennial we will have the best selection when it is in bloom around town. Note: Native plant pages will take you into the Native Plant section.

Perennials

Actaea: Bugbane

Natives

Native Actaea: Bugbane

Perennials

Agastache: Hyssop

Perennials

Anemone: Windflower

Perennials

Aquilegia: Columbine

Natives

Native Aquilegia: Columbine

Perennials

Artemisia

Natives

Asarum: Wild Ginger

Natives

Asclepias: Milkweed

Perennials

Aster

Perennials

Astilbe: False Spirea

Perennials

Bellium: Miniature Daisy

Perennials

Bergenia: Pigsqueak

Perennials

Brunnera: Bugloss

Perennials

Canna Lily

Natives

Camassia: Camas

Perennials

Chrysanthemum

Perennials

Coreopsis: Tickweed

Perennials

Corydalis

Perennials

Cyclamen

Bulbs

Dahlia

Bulbs

Delosperma: Ice Plant

Perennials

Delphinium: Larkspur

Perennials

Dianthus: Carnation

Perennials

Dicentra: Bleeding Heart

Natives

Dodecatheon: Shooting Star

Perennials

Echinacea: Coneflower

Perennials

Epimedium

Natives

Erigeron: Fleabane

Natives

Eriophyllum: Oregon Sunshine

Perennials

Erodium: Alpine Geranium

Perennials

Eupatorium: Joe-Pye Weed

Perennials

Euphorbia: Spurge

Natives

Fragaria: Wild Strawberry

Bulbs

Fritillaria

Perennials

Hardy Fuchsia

Perennials

Hardy Geranium

Perennials

Geum: Avens

Perennials

Helenium: Sneezeweed

Perennials

Hellebore

Perennials

Hellebore: Gold Collection

Perennials

Hellebore: Winter Jewel

Perennials

Heuchera: Coral Bells

Perennials

Hosta: Plantain Lily

Perennials

Iberis: Candytuft

Bulbs

Iris

Natives

Native Iris

Perennials

Kniphofia: Red Hot Poker

Perennials

Leptinella

Perennials

Leucanthemum: Shasta Daisy

Natives

Lewisia: Bitterroot

Perennials

Ligularia

Perennials

Monarda: Bee Balm

Perennials

Moss

Bulbs

Narcissus: Daffodil

Perennials

Paeonia: Peony

Perennials

Papaver: Poppy

Perennials

Parahebe

Natives

Penstemon: Beard Tongue

Perennials

Perovskia: Russian Sage

Perennials

Primula: Primrose

Perennials

Rudbeckia: Black-eyed Susan

Perennials

Salvia

Perennials

Santolina: Lavender Cotton

Perennials

Sedum

Perennials

Evergreen Sedum

Natives

Native Sedum: Stonecrop

Perennials

Sempervivum: Hen & Chicks

Natives

Sidalcea: Checker Mallow

Natives

Sisyrinchium

Blue-eyed Grass
Natives

Solidago: Goldenrod

Natives

Synthyris: Native Figwort

Perennials

Top Shade Perennials

Perennials

Top Sun Perennials

Perennials

Tricyrtis: Toad Lily

Natives

Trillium: Wake Robin

Bulbs

Tulip

Natives

Vancouveria: Inside-out Flower

Perennials

Vinca: Periwinkle

Perennials

Viola: Violet

Natives

Native Viola: Violet

Perennials

Zantedeschia: Calla Lily