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Gardening advice on mushy firesticks plants

Author: Cathy Cromell
Issue: February, 2013, Page 123


Q - My firesticks plant, Euphorbia tirucalli ‘Rosea’, was hit hard by cold temperatures and now has limp limbs. Should I leave it alone or trim it back?

A - Chances are the portion of the plant that has gone limp is also mushy, not firm in texture, and has changed in color from green to a yellow/tan color. “I know this because it happened to the fire-sticks in my yard,” observes University of Arizona Maricopa County Cooperative Extension (MCCE) Master Gardener Michelle Anderson. Those stems will dry up on their own and become brittle. If you wish, you can prune damaged areas down to firm tissue, but wait until late March when the likelihood of another freeze has passed. Use caution when pruning, as the plant has a white sap that can irritate the skin.
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