Tuesday, 23 February 2010

Crown of Thorns

I've always liked Crown of Thorns.
Perfectly symmetrical, the way the bracts fold against each other. Another xenic plant that does very well in rock gardens where it is one of the few succulents to actually sport foliage. With sticky poisonous sap, it is designed for rough living and one of the quickest ways to kill it is to pamper it with too much water.
The Crown of Thorns is also an emblematic plant.
It's thought that Christ's infamous crown of thorns was this charming euphorbia.
With its thorny spiny stem and poisonous sap, it tops the list of plants I would not like on my head.

Interestingly, famous cousin, Poinsettia, is associated with Christianity as well. It is one of the undisputed botanical stars of the nativity season.
The flowers of the Crown of Thorns (like the Poinsettia) are colourful bracts rather than the true flowers. The real flowers are small and often insignificant. The bracts now come in a number of colours ranging from vivid reds to muted salmons. Lemon colour is still quite unusual.

To grow it sucessfully, keep it out of open weather and warter sparingly. It likes full sun. It fact, it will thrive in full sun. It is a fairly heavy feeder. Watch for rot from over-watering. The stems will just disintergrate and that wil be the end of your plant.

19 comments:

Pam said...

Keep those beautiful garden pictures coming for those of us whose gardens are still several feet under the snow pile. Until spring gets here you will keep me hopeful.

Bernie said...

Great photos ... I don't think I've ever seen a lemon Crown of Thorns. These are plants that survive so well over here in the dry tropics as well.

My Chutney Garden said...

@Pam - Snow is such a novelty for us. I always imagine the landscape going to sleep. :)
@Bernie - We are generally very wet but the weather has been drought-dry since the beginning of the season in January. Thanks for coming by to visit.
Sharon

Babara said...

It's the first time I see a Crown of Thorn in bloom and I didn't know they exist in various colours. Thank you for showing!

Stone Art said...

They are lovely indeed, a lovely swirling motion to the flower.

Patty said...

Oh those are beautiful! thanks for the growing tips I think I'll try to grow The Crown Of Thorns this year, wish me luck!

Babette said...

I don't know that flower--but i love the whorl of petals...almost mesmerizing..

WizzyTheStick said...

Love plants like these that hold up well under our current drought conditions.

WizzyTheStick said...

Crown of thorns strikes me as my kind of plant requiring little care and perfect for this drought.

Albert said...

This plant makes me think about both my mother and grandmother. They both loved this plant. The name in Dutch is "Christus doorn" which means "Thorns of Christ".

Great pictures!

Thank you for sharing this information

Grtz Albert (The Netherlands)

HomeAndGarden

Nicole said...

I love this plant-I saw some Thai hybrids in Asia that are just amazing. Of course it is highly doutful this was the crown of thorns that Christ wore, as this plant is native to Madagascar and only brought to Europe in the late 1800's.

wsxwhx722 said...

IS VERY GOOD..............................

Sinthalunda said...

Uplifting post. Thanks.

Lynnylu said...

What a lovely place you live in! The flower photos are gorgeous! Thanks
for commenting on "Lime Tree Can't Bear Orange". I'm sure you have some
wonderful recipes from where you live. Would love to see some.

Jenny said...

Beautful flowers and beautiful writing! I was wondering if there was any way of contacting you? Searched your page for a mail adress but no luck. Could you drop me a line at trivial matters at hotmail dot com?

Sukhdeepak said...

Very beautiful flowers. Very nice blog.

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Pam said...

I love seeing all the different plants. Thanks for the show:-)