This candelabra-shaped euphorbia is native to southern and eastern Africa. It
is not found in North America.
Identification: The upper parts of this cactus-like
euphorbia, which can reach 33' (10 m) in height, branch repeatedly into a shape that is sometimes reminiscent of candelabras.
The dark brown ridges are called "chocolate drop" ridges. A single trunk may produce as many as 150 thick branches.
There are usually 4 ribs, but 3-8. Dark brown spines occur in pairs, angled away from each other but not completely opposite, looking like horns. Sometimes small, narrow leaves appear near the tops, and they may be green,
green and white, or yellowish. Flowers are yellow-green, in clusters of 3-6 above the spine pairs. Fruits are
green, and only the size of peas.
This photo, by Haplochromis, captures the reason for the name.
Edibility: Poisonous Most euphorbias contain a thick milky
"latex" that is poisonous when ingested or even on contact with the skin. This euphorbia is more toxic than