Myrtle Spurge

myrtle spurge flower
myrtle spurge plant
myrtle spurge leaves

Myrtle spurge

Euphorbia myrsinites

Information Sheet (PDF)


Colorado List A - Eradication required in Jefferson County


General

  • All parts are poisonous; sap may cause burns or irritate skin
  • Family: Euphorbiaceae (Spurge)
  • Has been sold as an ornamental but no longer available in Colorado
  • Introduced from Mediterranean region


Common names

  • Creeping spurge
  • Donkey tail spurge
  • Myrtle spurge


Habitat

  • Found in gardens, natural areas and rocky slopes
  • Perennial forb
  • Prefers light, well-drained soil


Plant


Vegetation

  • Blue-green leaves. Foliage dies back in winter.
  • Leaves are alternate, egg-shaped to circular and surround the stem
  • Stems unbranched, trail over ground; 8 inches tall


Roots

  • Tap root


Flower

  • Flowers in spring. Inconspicuous surrounded by greenish-yellow bracts
  • Turn bright orange-red in early summer


Seedling

  • Rosette


Reproduction

  • Seed
  • Vegetation fragments


Control


Biological

  • N/A


Chemical


Cultural

  • Prevention – maintain health of site
  • Removal; wear protective clothing (long sleeves, long pants and gloves)


Mechanical

  • Burning - N/A
  • Grazing - N/A
  • Mowing - Not recommended; will spread seed


Use all chemicals according to the manufacturer's label. No specific recommendation or endorsement is made or implied by listing methods or products.