How to Care For Euphorbia Japonica

Euphorbia japonica can be described as an intriguing and sought-after dwarf cacti plant. The plant is a hybrid that was bred from two species native to South Africa. The plant is quite atypical when it comes to looks- it has a pineapple/cactus-like caudex that grabs attention when grown indoors.
Euphorbia japonica is a great choice for soil that is well-drained and well-lit conditions. It needs ample light (at at least 5-8 hours the day) and moderate moisture (40-50 percent), and be aware of insects like whiteflies and diseases like stem/root rot. The temperature must be maintained between 70 and 80 degrees (21-27degC) to allow the plant to thrive. Fertilizing isn’t a requirement to this species, however it is a good idea to improve soil quality. The plant is small and doesn’t require cutting or pruning.

In this book you’ll discover the most important information about the care and profile of the Euphorbia japonica. It is certain that this guide is the source you require to begin cultivating this amazing plant with the expertise of an expert.

What is an Euphorbia japonica look like?

Euphorbia japonica is also called a Pineapple Euphorbia or Cocklebur, is a plant with a light-leaved an bulbous stem/root system belonging to the family of Euphorbiaceae (the fourth largest flowering plant family).

The plants that are the parents that make up this hybrid hybrid Euphorbia susannae and Euphorbia bupleurifolia All of them are indigenous in South Africa.

The Cocklebur’s top expands (note that it’s an extremely slower-growing Euphorbia species) the caudex transforms into an extremely hardy basal stem.

The plant is characterized by its turnip-like roots that become broader than they lengthen. The stem is very rough and has thorn-like, succulent structures.

Keep in mind that the stem and the roots join to create the bulbous structure which is the main characteristic of this species. The leaves are short like willows, lighter green.

The plant produces tiny yellow-green flowers which create a an attractive appearance. Euphorbia japonica is a flowering plant that blooms in the summer and spring. When the plants are in a pot but not guaranteed the promise of blooming each year.

Incorporating all the structural characteristics The overall appearance of the plant resembles the appearance of a pineapple or a palm tree.

The whole plant is typically round, reaching 1 foot (12 in, 30 centimeters) in length as well as 1.67ft (20 inches 50 centimeters) in the diameter. Based on the place where the plant was bred, there could be differences in shape, size and color.

The plant is extremely robust and can withstand many different conditions which makes it a great option for a plant to grow in your home. It is, however, recommended to keep some basic conditions (as we’ll go over in the next section) to ensure that you don’t stress the plant.

How to take care of Euphorbia japonica

Here are the most important requirements for care of Euphorbia japonica you need to be aware of to ensure that it is healthy and alive.

How do I Get Water Euphorbia japonica

With its huge caudex, Euphorbia japonica is impressively drought-resistant. It means that it requires only that the soil be moist in order for it to flourish. Furthermore, the plant is slow to grow and therefore requires lesser water for the same of time over the long haul.

Here are two important watering guidelines to help this particular plant

  • In the summer, you should water more often as the soil is prone to drying out quite quickly. I adhere to a basic method of soil testing. Simply feel the top layer of the potter’s mix. If you notice that a couple of inches is dry, it’s is time to water. Even though Euphorbia japonica is a succulent plant, constant watering in the summer when temperatures are high could cause the plant to droop.
  • In winter, you should water only very sparingly, and only after the soil is dry completely. Watering the soil too often can cause lots of fungal diseases to your plant, and is an activity you should stay clear of.

Euphorbia japonica Light Requirements

It thrives under environments that have plenty of sunshine. If you want to grow the plant inside, select a location that will get adequate sunlight exposure. Choose a location near the window or in another location that has enough sunlight exposure.

Be aware that lots of sunshine does not necessarily mean scorching sunlight. If you expose your plants to these conditions the plant will become stressed, and you’ll make it more difficult to sustain it.

sunshine on plants inside with orange wall


Although the majority of tropical plants thrive in moist conditions Euphorbia japonica has a particular sensitivity to humidity levels below 80%.

The plant thrives in conditions of normal room humidity. 40-45% is the ideal level for this species of plant. If the humidity remains low, the plant will become brown and crisp.

The ideal conditions for growth for Euphorbia japonica is between 50 and 70 percent relative humidity, based on the plant’s requirements.

The relative humidity of most homes varies between 40 and 60 percent on a daily basis. I suggest that you purchase an air humidifier that is small and put it close to your Euphorbia japonica in order to boost the humidity in the surrounding area.

To adjust to dry conditions, certain websites recommend spraying plants. Misting however is not a major influence on humidity, and could cause the growth of fungal diseases in the surrounding environment. Don’t spray your plants because of this scenario.


The optimal temperatures to grow Euphorbia japonica ranges from 70 to 80degF (21-27degC)

Here are some tips to take into consideration:

  • Avoid extreme temperatures like scorching sun because it can do damage more than good for your plant.
  • If you are taking your plant outside during the day, make sure you bring it inside when temperatures drop lower than 50degF (10degC). While the plant is resistant to cold temperatures however, temperatures below 50degF could cause stress to it.

Euphorbia japonica Soil

It is suggested that Euphorbia japonica is planted in a well-drained soil to avoid root rot and excessive watering. A soil mix consisting of 70 percent decomposed granite soil with 30% perlite is the ideal soil for Euphorbia japonica.

If you own cacti or succulent potting mix, it will be more than perfect for your plant. If you’re looking to DIY and make your own mix, you must create the mix so that its grittiness and drainage is similar to a cacti mix.

Here are some examples of materials that you can utilize to create a growing mix to grow this plant:

  • Regular potting soil 50%
  • Sand 30%
  • Pumice 20%

If you are planting your first plant, select an earthy pot that will hold enough of the mix for potting. The ideal moment to start planting Euphorbia japonica is in March.

Fertilizing Euphorbia japonica

The cactus plant species do not require fertilization that often. If the soil is not in good condition and you want to provide it with an nutrient-balanced water-soluble fertilizer.

Before you apply your fertilizer, make sure that the fertilizer is dilute – try to aim for the equivalent of half strength.

Pruning and Trimming

Euphorbia japonica is a small planet that has a slow growth rate, which means it won’t require trimming or pruning. If you want to see the Euphorbia japonica develop in a specific way it is possible to prune or cut it according to your preference.

What is the best way to repot Euphorbia japonica

The plant will do perfectly in its plant pot in the beginning. It is advised to plant the plant in a new pot after each two or three years.

These are additional indicators that your plant may need to be repotted:

  • If the plant is growing beyond its pot, it is time to move on.
  • The plant’s roots have begun to emerge from the drainage holes
  • If the potting mix has totally dry or overly draining

The Step by Step Process of Repotting Euphorbia Japonica

  • Choose a pot that is 2-3 inches (5-7.5cm) bigger that the base of your bulbous plants
  • Create drainage holes in the new pot, just as the ones in the pot you are using now.
  • Make sure to cover the drainage holes using porous materials like coffee filters
  • The pot should be covered with soil or potting mix
  • Take the plant out of the container in which it is currently growing and then remove the roots
  • Place the plant in the pot that is larger.
  • The plant should be watered after a week. Do not be concerned if the plant seems to be wilting in the beginning.

Tips to Take into Account When Repotting Euphorbia Japonica

  • Do not water the plant until the week is done. This gives the roots of the plant that were damaged in the process of repotting enough time to heal.
  • Repot your plant the early spring, when growth has just begun to take off.

Propagating Euphorbia japonica

Fortunately, Euphorbia japonica can be propagated by the stem cutting method. It is only necessary to be cautious in handling this plant since it has a poisonous milk sap which can be irritation to skin.

Here’s the most effective procedure to follow:

  • Make sure you use a clean and sharp knife to cut the pieces.
  • Let the cuttings shrivel into a puddle before placing them into the soil that is well-drained.
  • To speed up the process of sprouting it is possible to brush the cuttings with a growth hormone prior to putting them in the soil
  • It could require a long time to grow, but you can accelerate the process by keeping the temperature of the soil at 77 degrees Fahrenheit.

Extra tip: Wrap the pot with bags to keep the moisture in , but let for the soil’s air to circulate for a few minutes every day. This will result in faster growth.

Common Euphorbia japonica Issues and How to Solve Them


Interestingly, this plant isn’t susceptible to pests. If insects were to infest the plant, they could include whiteflies, spider mites mealybugs, scales, and spider mites.

There are a few natural and homemade ways to get rid of insects. For mealybugs, spider mites and mealybugs Neem oil spray is a great option.

It is also possible to use ruby alcohol to eliminate these insects. If the number of insects is small, you can pick the bugs and eliminate of them.


The species of Euphorbias isn’t particularly susceptible to diseases. However, the diseases that are affecting Euphorbias could affect this plant species as well.

Here are the most common illnesses that could be affecting Euphorbia japonica :

The stem or root Rot

Rot can develop when you overwater your plant, particularly during winter. In general, there’s nothing to do about fungal diseases.

Although there is the option of obtaining fungicides that can fight the infection, it would be best to eliminate and isolate the affected plants in order to stop the spread of the infection to other healthy plants.

Powdery Mildew

Powdery Mildew is among the conditions that can be affecting the health of your Euphorbia japonicas. The disease is identified by a film of powder that forms across different parts within the plants.

The most common causes of mildew are inadequate lighting, a lack of essential nutrients in soil and high levels of humidity. The most effective method to combat this problem is to isolate this plant, and then applying the oil of neem.


Because this species of plant is a light-leaved species, drooping is not a major issue. However it is possible that the plant will be prone to drooping due to the following reasons:

  • Root and Stem Rot
  • Excessive sunburn
  • The hardy plant is flooded with water

Leaves Yellowing

The yellowing of leaves is a sign that the Euphorbia japonica has been stressed. Stress is most often caused by drown or overwater it. In addition to temperature fluctuations, the absence of nutrients, diseases and pests can lead to the an increase in the color of the euphorbia japonica.

Spots of brown on Leaves

Brown spots are usually caused by photo-toxic poisoning. This happens when plants are exposed to direct sunlight right after the application of insecticides.

Injury from handling the plant can also result in dark brown marks on leaves. If you take care of and handle the plant it is a rare occurrence.

Leaves Curling

As with many succulents, Euphorbia japonica’s leaves curled due to one or more of these causes:

  • Overwatering
  • Underwatering
  • Overexposure to direct sunlight
  • Insufficient light
  • Poor draining soil

Euphorbia japonica Toxicity

Similar to all varieties of plants within the Euphorbia Genus, the Euphorbia japonica is an oily sap that could be extremely toxic if consumed.

Children are more likely to be into this trap So be cautious when it comes to keeping your plant in a safe place.

If you are allergic to latex you’re more likely to react to Euphorbia japonica’s sap that is milky. This is why it’s important to use gloves when handling this plant.

Euphorbia japonica can be poisonous for pets (cats as well as dogs) So make sure that the plant is away from their reach.

Final Thoughts

It is Euphorbia japonica is an excellent indoor plant that can be an original plant to add to the collection that you already have. It’s fairly easy to maintain, which means it is suitable for novices and experienced gardeners.

If you take care of this tough plant by following the simple care guidelines included in this manual No pests or diseases are likely to infest your plant. In essence, you’ll enjoy the most pleasant experience with this species of plant.

Locate a trusted local shop or on the internet to purchase your Euphorbia japonica. Follow these guidelines that are highly effective and grow this plant like an expert.



Went from a bad gardener to a half-decent one over 10+ years. Super happy to share my tips and tricks with you :)