How Do You Make Euphorbia Tirucalli Turn Red?
Depending on the season and temperature, the stems might be red, orange, yellow, or green. Some of the stems also curl and become reddish inside. The leaves are also evergreen and will turn red in winter.
Firestick plants require four to six hours of strong sunshine per day. Grow firestick succulents in your backyard’s brightest place. During the summer, the magnificent foliage fades golden before turning brilliant red in the fall and winter.
Firestick potted plants require as much light as possible when grown indoors. For optimal results, place the succulents near a south or west-facing window. Turn the plant pot once a month to ensure even development and that the firestick plant receives adequate light.
It’s important to note that these ‘sticks of fire’ aren’t plants that flourish in low light.
How Do You Prune Euphorbia Tirucalli?
Pruning is rarely required for firestick succulents. Trim the foliage of the firestick plant only when dead leaves appear on the plant or to limit its size.
Alternatively, you could slice off stems to obtain cuttings for propagation. But remember to wear protective gloves and eye protection whenever you handle a pencil plant.
You’ll see a milky sap flowing out when you cut the leaves. Because of this irritating latex component, the firestick plant is also known as the ‘milk bush.’ Make certain that no sap from the plant comes into contact with your skin.
Here are some guidelines for pruning a pencil plant safely:
- Put on heavy rubber gloves, goggles, and make sure there is no exposed skin.
- Remove dead stems with sterile pruning shears.
- Prune branches from the top of the plant to help it grow shorter and bushier.
- Spray the ends of the stems with water after cutting them to prevent the deadly sap from pouring out.
- Unless you’re taking cuttings for propagation, place all cuttings in a sealed plastic bag in the trash.
- To eliminate the hazardous white sap, thoroughly clean and disinfect all equipment.
How Do You Pronounce Euphorbia Tirucalli?
Phonetic spelling of Euphorbia tirucalli: ‘You-FOR-bee-uh teer-ooh-KAL-eye’
Euphorbia Tirucalli is native to Africa, however it is now found all over the world. It is also known as Sticks on Fire or Firesticks, Pencil Cactus, and Pencil Tree. Euphorbia Tirucalli has pencil-thin stems that turn a fiery scarlet in the winter.
Does Euphorbia Tirucalli Cause Cancer?
Burkitt’s lymphoma, the most prevalent childhood cancer in much of Africa, may be caused by the sticky sap of the African milkbush.
The milkbush (Euphorbia tirucalli) is a tropical plant that thrives throughout Africa and in South America’s Amazon jungle. Africans utilize the plant’s white sap to produce glue and herbal medicines, and youngsters like playing with it.
However, experts in the United States have discovered that exposure to the sap may render children more vulnerable to the effects of a cancer-causing virus.
Burkitt’s lymphoma is an immune system tumor that is the most prevalent childhood cancer in Central Africa, yet it is uncommon in Western countries.
However, multiple study teams have discovered that rates of Burkitt’s lymphoma are substantially higher in areas of Africa where the milkbush is prevalent than in areas where it is uncommon.
The University of Michigan scientists planted milkbush plants in the lab and observed how the sap altered the behavior of the Epstein-Barr virus.
The virus frequently lurks low within human cells, inflicting little harm. However, scientists discovered that even extremely low concentrations of sap seemed to activate it, making it considerably more likely to cause cancer.
Why Is Euphorbia Tirucalli Called Pencil Cactus?
The firestick plant (pencil cactus or Euphorbia tirucalli) is not a cactus, but rather a succulent. The pencil cactus, stick cactus, fire plant, pencil plant, and ‘sticks on fire’ are all names for the firestick succulent.
Images of the firestick plant demonstrate how it got its name. The succulent features bunches of pencil-like stems that are orangey-red and appear to be on fire.
Is Euphorbia Tirucalli A Cactus?
The Pencil Cactus (also known as Euphorbia tirucalli or ET) is not a true cactus. It is a tough succulent plant that can reach heights of over thirty feet in the wild.
This succulent from South Africa, often known as firesticks or pencil tree, began as a sport (offshoot) of the bigger, solid-green Euphorbia tirucalli.
Both are simple to cultivate in coastal sections of Southern California and Mexico where temperatures remain over 32 degrees. Plants can grow to be up to 15 feet tall over time.
Depending on the season and temperature, the stems might be red, orange, yellow, or green. The plant can grow tall and tree-like, reaching heights of 8-10 feet (2.4-3 meters).
The plant’s sap is toxic and can cause serious irritations, therefore use caution when handling it. More information regarding care, propagation, toxicity, and growth tips can be found right here.
What Is The Best Fertilizer For Euphorbia Tirucalli?
Firestick plants require little fertilizer. These resilient pencil succulents thrive in poor soil and are adaptable to a wide range of growth conditions. Fertilize your plant once a year in spring using a weak, diluted houseplant fertilizer if you want to give it a nutritious boost.
It is critical to remember that over-fertilizing can be just as damaging to its growth as over-watering. Your succulent should thrive without feeding if you follow the three key firestick plant care instructions of bright light, sandy soil, and occasional watering.
How Big Does Euphorbia Tirucalli Grow?
Contrary to popular perception, the Pencil Cactus is not a cactus. The pencil cactus, also known as firestick plants, naked lady, and milk bush, is a shrub or small tree in the Euphorbiaceae family.
Euphorbia tirucalli, often known as the pencil cactus, is endemic to Africa and is most commonly found in dry places with black clay soil. This shrub can reach a height of 22 feet thanks to its smooth, succulent branches (7 meters). It has become a popular decorative plant all around the world.
This family of blooming plants, known as the firestick plant because of its orangey-red hue that makes it appear to be on fire during the milder seasons, is easy to cultivate indoors in pots or outside in full sunlight.
How Do You Water Euphorbia Tirucalli?
Water a firestick plant only when the soil is dry. The frequency with which you water your pencil plant is determined on the temperature and season. During the hot, dry summer months, you may need to water a firestick plant every one to two weeks. In the winter, you won’t need to water your plant at all.
Firestick plants should be allowed to dry between waterings. Overwatering the plant is one of the worst things you can do. If you water the succulent while the soil is still moist, this can happen.
Keep in mind that the firestick cactus is a drought-tolerant plant. It is preferable to water it infrequently rather than frequently.
Always fully soak the ground when watering a firestick plant. This kind of irrigation guarantees that the roots are adequately hydrated.
However, you must remember to wait until the soil has dried up before re-irrigating the plant. Watering succulent plants outside or inside requires the ‘soak and dry’ method of watering firestick plants.
If you have firestick bushes growing in your garden, you may not need to water the succulents at all during the spring and summer months. However, if you observe the small pencil-like stems growing wrinkly and brown, it could be an indication that your firestick plant needs to be watered.
How Do You Make Euphorbia Tirucalli Bloom?
If you possess a pencil cactus and are wondering how to make it flower, you can try a few methods. You might, however, try to force them to flower only when they are mature and strong enough.
Make sure to check the pH of the soil first. It is true that pencil cactus can grow in practically any soil media with a wide pH range.
Having said that, they would still prefer to grow in soil with the expected pH. It would be best to use a soil mix with a pH range of 5.5- 6, which would be ideal for your pencil cactus.
If adjusting the pH is tough, you might try applying fertilizers or even organic materials to convert it to a healthy pH of the soil mix.
Second, ensure that the pencil cactus receives enough sunlight. As you may be aware, it is critical that you provide them with appropriate sunshine in order for them to perform efficiently.
As a result, you must ensure that the pencil cactus receives adequate sunshine. Ideally, you should get around 4-5 hours of direct sunlight per day.
It is critical to hydrate them correctly in addition to providing appropriate sunlight. You do not, however, need to water the cactus on a regular basis. You could do it up to twice a month.
You might either water them directly on the cactus soil or spray some water on the cactus soil as well.
Finally, allow a cooler period for them to bloom. You could generally do it in the winter by bringing all of your cactus inside and putting them in a somewhat colder location.
When you do this, the pencil cactus will begin to blossom. However, do not expose them to colder temperatures because this will harm the plant.
If you follow all of these processes, you will be rewarded with pencil cactus blossoms. They flower in a brief period of time, perhaps once a year.
Is Euphorbia Tirucalli Poisonous To Dogs?
The pencil cactus plant generates an acidic milky white sap or latex that is extremely hazardous to both people and animals. Because the sap is produced when the plant’s stem is broken, it should never be consumed or handled with exposed skin.
In humans, the sap’s toxin can cause severe skin, mouth, and eye irritation. In severe cases, gastrointestinal issues and blindness have been recorded.
Animals that swallow the sap experience vomiting and oral discomfort, hence this plant should be maintained away from areas where animals are allowed.
When working with this plant, always wear the proper safety gear, such as rubber gloves and goggles, to avoid being poisoned by the sap.