Euphorbia Problems | 15 Major Problems They Encounter |

Euphorbia plants belong to the family Euphorbiaceae, and we are going to cover the Euphorbia problems in this article

So, if you are planning to grow a Euphorbia plant or if you are already growing one of these, you could keep reading this article as it would be very useful.

Euphorbia Problems

Euphorbia Stem rot

Euphorbia stem rot could occur as a repercussion of a fungal disease. If you splash water, soil and peat to other plants, chances are that it could even spread among those plants as well

When the fungus invades the Euphorbia plants, first the tall stems will start to rot, particularly at the limbs.

You could commonly spot the stem rot among the Euphorbia plants which are grown in the green houses. 

Some people find it difficult to identify whether it is exactly  the stem rot or any other diseases such as  corking or sunburns. 

You could mainly identify the stem rot from its brown place, particularly if it is soft, you could assume that it is rotten. In that circumstance you need to get rid of that part and seclude the plant part.

Once the Euphorbia plants suffer from the stem rot, the whole stem will perish. However, you could consider snipping off the brown area. 

Further if you think their spines are a deterrent, you could consider removing their upright spine as well. I recommend removing the stem as it would be more productive. 

You may consider that as a senseless act, however if you do not do it, chances are that it could even spread faster among other parts of the plants. 

You could keep the healthy parts of the plants for the propagation process.

Once you segregate the healthy plant parts, you could leave them in a hot and a dry place where they can develop callous. 

Further I recommend you dip them in cinnamon and only after that you could pot them in a gritty soil. You could sprinkle cinnamon around the cut edges.

Next you could seclude the infected cuttings. However, it is very unlikely that the fungicides would be productive here as chances are that the entire Euphorbia plant will be infected. 

Having said that you should be able to make it survive in the soil mix if you water them lightly and sprinkle cinnamon also. Cinnamon is well renowned for its anti-fungal reactivities.

Euphorbia fungus


You could spot Rhizoctoria in almost all types of the soil.  Rhizoctoria could invade the crown of the Euphorbia plants particularly if they have high levels of humidity and excess moisture. 

This fungus type could occupy both roots as well as the stem.

You could commonly spot them among the matured Euphorbia plants. Once the Euphorbia plants are under attack by these fungus, they would tend to look unhealthy and limp. 

As they spread more, you could see how early lesions arise on the stem, particularly on the stem which interacts with the ground. 

Once the attacks get more severe, those black lesions could spread right through the entire stem.                    

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Once your Euphorbia plants go through this condition it is important that you provide sufficient sunlight levels and temperature levels and finally water them appropriately too.   

Rhizoctoria could stay in the soil in inactive mode until they get their optimal conditions. They could be so annoying as they could invade other pots by soil or even by tools. 

However, you could prevent these fungal attacks from growing them in a fresh growing medium. Further, always ensure that you disinfect the tools and wash them properly once you complete gardening all the plants.


Euphorbia plants could get invaded with Fusarium fungus as well. It could also mainly attack the Euphorbia plants’ crown. 

Further you could come across many strains in Fusarium as well. They could be so irritating and annoying as they could invade the whole plant. 

Once they get infected with this fungus type, they could come up with wet mushy and sunken spots. 

You could commonly spot these lesions at the Euphorbia plants base and those lesions would further consist with purple borders as well.

Unfortunately, it will not be possible to treat them by cutting them or pruning them. When the attack becomes more severe, those spots would come up around the Euphorbia stems. 

However, it is important that you act wisely to prevent these attacks as it is always best to prevent them rather than treating them once they attack your plants.  

To prevent these fungal attacks, you should be mindful to avoid watering the stems and their leaves.

Further avoid watering them on a frequent basis. Instead, water them thoroughly. Always place your fingers in the soil and check whether their soil is dry or damp. 

Depending on that you need to either water them immediately or wait for some more days and water.  

These fungi find it very easy to spread via wounds and lesions. As such best is to get rid of the infected plants entirely and use their healthy parts for propagation.

Euphorbia Problems

Brown spots on euphorbia

You may come across brown spots in Euphorbias and it could be mainly due to sunburns.

Once you expose the Euphorbias to bright full sunlight at once, it could result in sunburns in the plants.  

You could commonly spot this among the plants which are grown in the green houses initially as they are more vulnerable for sunburns. 

Further the plants which are grown in the green houses grow under stable conditions and if you expose them to drastic changes in the sunlight conditions, it could result in sunburns in the plants. 

To avoid this, best is to acclimate the plants for bright sunlight without exposing them at once.

In addition to that if you had grown these plants whilst covering them with a shade cloth, avoid exposing them to full sunlight at once too. 

Apart from that if you come across any browning of the spines of the plants, it could be natural due to aging.

Euphorbia turning yellow

Your Euphorbia could turn yellow due to several reasons. It could be mainly due to the faults you do in watering them. 

Literally you should water the soil only when the soil is dry. You could consider watering them once a week during summertime.

If you are unsure as to whether the soil is dry or moist you could simply place your finger into the soil and check the soil condition.   

See also  Brown Spots On Succulents | Reasons And Prevention Methods |

In addition to the faults you do in watering, if you expose them to colder weather conditions, that could also result in yellowing of the Euphorbia plants. 

These plants are fond of growing in warmer temperatures and hence if there is any forecast of colder weather conditions, you need to take necessary steps to protect the plants.

Euphorbia black spots

Euphorbia black spots could also be a repercussion of a fungal attack.

It is important that you attend to it very soon unless chances are that your infected Euphorbia plant will die due to that in winter. 

If you have grown these plants in a regular potting medium it could result in this condition. Hence best is to grow them in a potting medium which is well draining.

Euphorbia turning red

Euphorbia plants turn red when you expose them to extreme summer conditions, particularly from intense heated conditions. 

They would literally tend to turn their stems and leaves into red as a consequence of too much exposure for intense sunlight.  

To remedy this, you need to locate them in an area where they will be exposed to partial sunlight. 

Euphorbia corking

When the Euphorbia plants are in need of their outer layer (epidermis) to be replaced, corking takes place. 

Initially they would turn their older stems into brown and later the bulging of the tissues would take place. This is something which you could just ignore as it is their nature. 

You do not have to bother in treating them. Ultimately, they would come up with a remedy for the older tissues. 

Only thing, many people find corking as something unpleasant to look at, however you need to give them some time so that they can get them out of that condition by themselves.

Wilting euphorbia

Wilting of the Euphorbia plants occurs due to lack of water. 

Hence, if you see your plant has started to wilt, check, and see whether you could find any more signs of under watering. 

If you do, you need to immediately start watering the plants. with one or two drinks of watering, they could come back to normal.

Do euphorbia die in winter?

Euphorbia plants do not die in winter. In fact, winter is their dormant season where they will be literally in their relaxing mode. 

When they go dormant, they will be literally saving their energy for future purposes. During this time, it is very unlikely that you need to water them. 

However, if their soil mix is bone dry, you could consider watering them lightly.

Once they complete their dormancy period, they could come out from their dormancy and start growing actively.  

Do not expose them to temperatures below 55 degrees Fahrenheit during winter as it could be harmful for the plants. 

Why is my Euphorbia turning white?

Powdery mildew is the culprit of turning your Euphorbias white.  Powdery mildew is also yet another fungal body type which consists of a white to gray layer. 

Once they invade your euphorbia plants, it would take a powdery appearance just like the name these fungus bodies have inherited.  

It is important that you conduct the proper care treatments to avoid them attacking your beloved Euphorbia plants.

Euphorbia Problems

Why is my Euphorbia not flowering?

If your Euphorbias do not flower, it could be mainly due to lack of proper care treatments they get.

It is crucial that your plants get sufficient sunlight levels and water amounts to flower. In addition to that they need proper temperature levels also to start flowering. 

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I have seen so many people tend to apply bloom booster fertilizers to stimulate the flower blossoming of the plants. 

However, I do not recommend doing that. Ideally you need to check whether your plants are showing any symptoms of under watering or over watering. 

Further check whether you have grown them in a well-draining soil mix too.  More importantly check whether your plants are receiving sufficient sunlight levels as well.

Why is my euphorbia dropping leaves?

Under watering is what causes these plants to drop their leaves. You might think, Succulents have water conserved in their bodies and hence you do not need to water them. 

In fact, they want some amount of water for their survival. Best is to water them once a week during summer but do it thoroughly. 

Do not start to worry if you encounter such an issue, all you need to do is to supply them some water and they could revive with a couple of watering sessions. 

Ensure that you do not supply them water in abundance though.

Why do crown of thorns leave curling?

Euphorbia plant crowns act as a water conservation part of the plants. Their leaves could absorb water from them whenever they require it. 

Hence, if the plants are running short of sufficient water, their crowns would start to curl. This literally means, your plants are starving for more moisture. 

You need to ideally water whenever you see their soil is dry . Having said that, ensure that you do not keep it bone dry though. 

Why are the euphorbia leaves of thorns turning yellow?

If the plants are running short of necessary nutrients, Euphorbia plant leaves could turn yellow which could ultimately result in the death of the plant. 

If you have grown them in an inappropriate location it could result in your euphorbia plant leaves of thorns to turn yellow. 

To remedy this, you need to change their location and plant them in a place where they can gain sufficient sunlight levels and good aeration. 

Once you provide these conditions, they could revive faster.

Why are my Euphorbia spines turning brown?

If you spot your Euphorbia plant’s spines have become brown, it could be a sign of rotting, sunburns or corking. 

Further if your plants have become pot bound their spines would become brown in color. Repotting would be a good way to treat this.

Special care tips

It is crucial that you practice the right growing care tips when taking care of these plants. Keep in mind that you should not ever expose them for drastic changes in the growing conditions. 

You need to water them properly only when their soil is dry.

Further you have to grow them in a well-draining soil mix If there is excess moisture retained in the pot, it would lead to soggy and damp conditions in the potting medium and result in root rot etc.

Apart from that, ensure that you supply them sufficient sunlight levels also. It has to be ideally 3-4 hours of direct sunlight preferably during the morning hours.


As long as you provide the aforesaid care tips, they will flourish and will be able to overcome all these issues and diseases. 

Trust this article was useful for you to improve your knowledge on the Euphorbia plans and how to care for them properly.  

Credit to : Morris Park In the Ozarks
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About author

I’m Dr. Chamika, As a hobby love talking about plants and showing you that taking care of indoor plants. My website is knowledge I’ve learned over the years and continue to learn about growing succulents. If you’re a succulent lover, then you have come to the correct place.

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