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The Sticks on Fire euphorbia has become one of the most popular succulent shrubs in Inland Empire landscapes in the past decade. This is due to the intensely colorful red and orange stems that develop in sunny exposures for year around garden interest. The stems dominate this plant; tiny leaves and flowers emerge for short periods of time and quickly disappear.

This is a popular container plant, as a focal element in succulent gardens, on banks and southwestern style plantings. Young plants are tender to frost and do best in warm and sunny microclimates. Like other Euphorbias, E. t. 'Sticks on Fire', has a poisonous sap that drips from cut stems and care must be taken when trimming this plant, including the use of protective eyewear.

Water Needs

Sticks on Fire is well adapted to all parts of the Inland Empire in sunny exposures with normal winter rains and low amounts of summer irrigation. The chart shown below provides a recommended baseline guide to the monthly irrigation schedule and volume of supplemental water needed to maintain healthy growth throughout the average year. It should be noted there are several months marked by an asterisk (*) when winter rains often provide sufficient moisture and irrigation is not needed. The high and low range of moisture indicates Sticks on Fire can grow with varying amounts of water; little supplemental water is needed during summer.

Irrigation Schedule and Graph

Low Water Use Plants

Irrigation Schedule 1

  Jan* Feb* Mar* Apr May Jun Jul Aug Sep Oct Nov* Dec*
Runs per Month 0x to 2x 0x to 2x 0x to 2x 1x 1x 1x 1x 1x 1x 1x 0x to 2x 0x to 2x
Inches per Run 1" 1" 1" 1" 1" 1" 1" 1" 1" 1" 1" 1"
Inches per Month 0" to 2" 0" to 2" 0" to 2" 1" 1" 1" 1" 1" 1" 1" 0" to 2" 0" to 2"

Range of supplemental summer water: 7"
Range of supplemental winter water: 0"-10"

  Jan* Feb* Mar* Apr May Jun Jul Aug Sep Oct Nov* Dec*
For more information on how to use this Irrigation Schedule and Graph, follow this link.

For information how to calculate your irrigation system’s schedule and precipitation rate, please follow this link.

Plant Properties

Plant Type: Succulent
Foliage Character: Evergreen
Habit: Upright, Rigid, Open, Multi-trunk, Irregular branching
Growth Rate: Moderate
Height: 4 ft. - 8 ft.
Width: 3 ft. - 5 ft.
Water Needs: Low 1
Foliage Color: Red, Orange
Flower Color: Insignificant
Flower Season: Spring
Soil Adaptations: Well-draining soil
Exposure Adaptations: Morning sun, Heat, Drought, Aridity, All day sun, Partial sun
Function: Specimen, Residential spaces, Raised planters, Foliage accent plant, Container plant, Banks, Background plant


When pruning any Euphorbia, always wear eye protection and gloves, and avoid contact with the highly irritating white sap. If it gets on you, wash it off immediately (S). Can be pruned for cuttings to root or for size control in spring (D).



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