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Herbaceous PerennialShrubs

Euphorbia characias 'Forescate'
  • RHS Plants for pollinators

An evergreen, perennial sub-shrub forming an upright clump of stems up to 1m (39in) high with green-grey, narrowly lance-shaped leaves and roughly spherical heads of yellow-green floral bracts with reddish centres, in spring

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Size
Ultimate height
1–1.5 metres
Time to ultimate height
2–5 years
Ultimate spread
1–1.5 metres
Growing conditions
Chalk
Loam
Sand
Moisture
Well–drained
pH
Acid, Alkaline, Neutral
Colour & scent
StemFlowerFoliageFruit
Spring Yellow Green Red Green Grey Silver
Summer Green Grey Silver
Autumn Green Grey Silver
Winter Green Grey Silver
Position
  • Full sun
Aspect

South–facing or West–facing or East–facing

Exposure
Sheltered
Drought resistance
Yes
Hardiness
H4
Botanical details
Family
Euphorbiaceae
Native to the UK
No
Foliage
Evergreen
Habit
Bushy
Potentially harmful
Humans/Pets: IRRITANT to skin/eye, harmful if eaten. Wear gloves and other protective equipment when handling. For further information and contact numbers regarding pets, see the HTA guide to potentially harmful plants
Genus

Euphorbia can be annuals, perennials, shrubs or succulents, with milky sap and small flowers held within cupped, often colourful bracts

Name status

Unresolved

How to grow

Cultivation

Grows best in mild areas in light, well-drained soil in full sun. See Euphorbia for further advice

Propagation

Propagate by division in early spring or take basal cuttings in spring or early summer; dip cut surfaces in charcoal or lukewarm water to prevent bleeding

Suggested planting locations and garden types
  • City and courtyard gardens
  • Cottage and informal garden
  • Mediterranean climate plants
  • Patio and container plants
  • Wildlife gardens
  • Flower borders and beds
Pruning

Cut back old, flowered stems to the ground in late summer and autumn

Pests

May be susceptible to aphids

Diseases

Generally disease-free

Get involved

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