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 Euphorbia stygiana ssp. santamariae 
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Joined: Mon Oct 29, 2007 3:59 pm
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Location: Loughborough, Leics, central UK
Post Euphorbia stygiana ssp. santamariae
Just wondered how this spp was bearing up in the few gardens that may have it Euphorbia stygiana ssp. santamariae has proven hardy for us over the last 4 winters.
To put its record into perspective E. mellifera was not hardy here in the East midlands (central England) though not killed outright each year it looked dreadful coming into spring eventually being dug up and replaced.

This tree forming plant is in a fairly well drained bed but will not see any winter sun from October to March it now stands at 6ft high but could reach 10mts high.
The plant kindly came from Mark Fillan

Sad to see its still on the critically endangered red list due to agricultural development which listed just 50 mature plants back 2008.
An update of the situation would be interesting to see whether the population is still in decline or any steps that have been taken to reverse the situation is actually working.

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Nice to see no rot at the base of the stem as you some times get with the Shefflera spp

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So do you guys like the look of this tree forming Spurge or is it not for you?


Fri Mar 10, 2017 5:18 pm
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Joined: Thu Apr 24, 2008 8:58 pm
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Location: Oxford UK
Post Re: Euphorbia stygiana ssp. santamariae
Kev.... Do you think that it is this sub species that they are talking about as they are not specific only quoting the area of cultivation as Santa Maria island?
I have stygiana but it could be a hybrid. Mine has taken over a whole border over a period of six years and unfortunately will need a prune after flowering
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Like you I had damage on E mellifera but mine has grown right back after the 2010 winter and is spreading everywhere.
Here is a close up of the stygiana leaves which can be large and are clearly different to your "tree" species.


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Your Euphorbia stygiana from Mark Fillan ... how would you assess its speed of growth?

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Fri Mar 10, 2017 9:12 pm
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Joined: Fri Oct 05, 2012 9:06 pm
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Location: Telford UK
Post Re: Euphorbia stygiana ssp. santamariae
Mine was also from Mark and is a similar height. I think it is a handsome plant and is definitely tree like with a defined trunk. Mine has spent two winters - admittedly mild ones - outdoors and unprotected in a small plastic pot. At my new house it will be planted outside. I would guess it is easy from cuttings so I will take some as an insurance policy.


Fri Mar 10, 2017 10:51 pm
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Post Re: Euphorbia stygiana ssp. santamariae
I have stygiana and experience similarish growth shown in Andy's pic. The leaves are big and beautiful unlike Melifera which can look tatty
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Fri Mar 10, 2017 10:55 pm
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Post Re: Euphorbia stygiana ssp. santamariae
Beautiful Kev. It is very exotic looking.

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Fri Mar 10, 2017 11:41 pm
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Post Re: Euphorbia stygiana ssp. santamariae
Mark is the only source of these I believe. I've had one out for 4 winters, now around 2m tall. In a genus of superlative plants, this is a truly stand-out star.

Edit - the big surprise is how happy it is in dry olf Essex, given it constantly raining homeland.

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Sat Mar 11, 2017 8:40 am
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Post Re: Euphorbia stygiana ssp. santamariae
Paul Spracklin wrote:
Mark is the only source of these I believe. I've had one out for 4 winters, now around 2m tall. In a genus of superlative plants, this is a truly stand-out star.

Edit - the big surprise is how happy it is in dry olf Essex, given it constantly raining homeland.


Paul... Nick Macer has it on his website too.

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Sat Mar 11, 2017 12:42 pm
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Post Re: Euphorbia stygiana ssp. santamariae
I'm glad to see this thread as I just received one of these from Desert To Jungle last week. I have been desperately trying to find pictures of this plant in it's habitat and information on its natural growing conditions. Most of the decent photos of this plant on the internet are either from nurseries selling it or from members of this forum and I've found surprisingly little info on what kind of soil, aspect, watering, feeding etc it is likely to need other than 'good drainage'. From what I've read the terrain and geology of the Azores seems very variable with some very sandy coastal areas, some dry clay pans, lots of mountain/rocky habitats but with a wide range of different parent rocks providing different mineral concentrations and potentially different PH values.

Has anyone been to see these plants in the wild or know anything more about what they like? I would love to see what a 10m tall specimen looks like!


Tue Mar 14, 2017 12:17 am
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Post Re: Euphorbia stygiana ssp. santamariae
Andy, your plant is E. x pasteurii, the hybrid between E. stygiana and E. mellifera. And Mo, yours almost definitely is too, especially if it is big like Andy's.

Nate, I presume you're are talking about obtaining straight E. stygiana, rather than the subsp. santamariae? They are all easy and unfussy plants. You are worrying too much. :)

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Tue Mar 14, 2017 10:24 pm
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Post Re: Euphorbia stygiana ssp. santamariae
I can't remember to be honest but I got it from you! :oops:

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Tue Mar 14, 2017 10:28 pm
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Post Re: Euphorbia stygiana ssp. santamariae
Nick Macer wrote:
Nate, I presume you're are talking about obtaining straight E. stygiana, rather than the subsp. santamariae? They are all easy and unfussy plants. You are worrying too much. :)


Hi Nick, no, I was talking about subsp. santamariae - there's a fair bit of info around on plain E. stygiana but very little for the subsp. in the way of photos or detailed reports of their natural habitat. I was intrigued as to why the arboreal characteristics of the subsp might have evolved - I can only really hazard a guess that a population was isolated in a less exposed environment with taller competing vegetation. A few decent photos could really shed a bit of light on this.

Anyway, I've got both now, so i'm going to grow them more or less side by side and see what happens! Glad to hear they're easy :D


Wed Mar 15, 2017 8:58 pm
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Post Re: Euphorbia stygiana ssp. santamariae
Here are some pictures of the ssp. in habitat:

http://www.azoresbioportal.angra.uac.pt/listagens.php?lang=en&sstr=4&id=F01235


Thu Mar 16, 2017 1:09 am
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Post Re: Euphorbia stygiana ssp. santamariae
Josh76 wrote:


Brilliant! Thank you so much for this 8)


Sat Mar 18, 2017 8:42 pm
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