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green poinsettia, tooth poinsettia, tooth spurge

Habit Herbs, annual, with taproot.

erect or ascending, 15–60 cm, both pilose and inconspicuously strigillose;

branches usually ± straight, occasionally proximal branches arcuate.


usually opposite, occasionally alternate at distal nodes;

petiole 5–20 mm, pilose;

blade 30–70 × 4–35 mm, narrowly lanceolate to suborbiculate, usually broadest below middle, base usually acute to subobtuse, rarely subtruncate, margins coarsely crenate-dentate or doubly crenate, strigillose, flat to slightly revolute, apex broadly acute, abaxial surface long pilose with weak, filiform hairs, adaxial surface sparsely pilose to glabrate;

venation pinnate, midvein prominent.


campanulate, 3.8 × 1.8 mm, glabrous;

involucral lobes divided into several linear, smooth lobes;

glands (1–)2, green, sessile and broadly attached, 0.7–0.9 × 0.9–1.2 mm, opening oblong, glabrous;

appendages absent.

Staminate flowers


Pistillate flowers

ovary glabrous, styles 1.2 mm, 2-fid 1/2 to nearly entire length.


depressed-globose, 2.5–2.8 × 3.5–4 mm, 3-lobed, glabrous;

columella 1.8–2.1 mm.


pale gray to black, ovoid, rounded in cross section, 2.1–2.7 × 1.7–2.1 mm, evenly minute-tuberculate;

caruncle 0.4–0.6 mm.


arrangement: terminal pleiochasial branches usually 3, occasionally reduced to congested cyme, 1–2-branched;

pleiochasial bracts 2–4, often whorled, wholly green or paler green, white, or mauve at base, similar in shape and size to distal leaves or slightly narrower;

dichasial bracts similar in shape to distal leaves but smaller (often highly reduced).


peduncle 0.7–1 mm.


= 28.

Euphorbia dentata

Phenology Flowering and fruiting spring–fall.
Habitat Bottomland forests, stream and river banks, bluffs, prairies, glades, fallow fields, roadsides, railroad cinders, open disturbed areas.
Elevation 0–1000 m. (0–3300 ft.)
from FNA
AL; AR; GA; IA; IL; IN; KS; KY; LA; MD; MI; MO; MS; NC; NE; OH; OK; PA; SC; TN; TX; VA; WV; ON; Mexico (Chihuahua, Coahuila, Nuevo León, Tamaulipas)
[WildflowerSearch map]
[BONAP county map]

Euphorbia dentata is native from northern Mexico and the south central United States north and east through the Ohio River Valley. Scattered occurrences in the southeastern United States likely represent adventive populations. Reports of E. dentata as a noxious weed (from the United States and the Old World) should most likely be attributed to introductions of E. davidii.

(Discussion copyrighted by Flora of North America; reprinted with permission.)

Source FNA vol. 12, p. 321.
Parent taxa Euphorbiaceae > Euphorbia > sect. Poinsettia
Sibling taxa
E. aaron-rossii, E. abramsiana, E. acuta, E. agraria, E. albomarginata, E. alta, E. angusta, E. antisyphilitica, E. arizonica, E. astyla, E. austrotexana, E. bicolor, E. bifurcata, E. bilobata, E. blodgettii, E. bombensis, E. brachycera, E. capitellata, E. carunculata, E. chaetocalyx, E. chamaesula, E. cinerascens, E. commutata, E. conferta, E. cordifolia, E. corollata, E. crenulata, E. cumulicola, E. cuphosperma, E. curtisii, E. cyathophora, E. cyparissias, E. davidii, E. deltoidea, E. dendroides, E. discoidalis, E. eriantha, E. exigua, E. exserta, E. exstipulata, E. falcata, E. fendleri, E. florida, E. floridana, E. garberi, E. georgiana, E. geyeri, E. glyptosperma, E. golondrina, E. gracillima, E. graminea, E. helioscopia, E. helleri, E. heterophylla, E. hexagona, E. hirta, E. hooveri, E. humistrata, E. hypericifolia, E. hyssopifolia, E. indivisa, E. innocua, E. inundata, E. ipecacuanhae, E. jaegeri, E. jejuna, E. laredana, E. lasiocarpa, E. lata, E. lathyris, E. longicruris, E. lurida, E. macropus, E. maculata, E. marginata, E. meganaesos, E. melanadenia, E. mendezii, E. mercurialina, E. mesembrianthemifolia, E. micromera, E. misera, E. missurica, E. myrsinites, E. nephradenia, E. nutans, E. oblongata, E. ocellata, E. ophthalmica, E. ouachitana, E. parishii, E. parryi, E. pediculifera, E. peplidion, E. peplus, E. perennans, E. pergamena, E. pinetorum, E. platyphyllos, E. platysperma, E. polycarpa, E. polygonifolia, E. polyphylla, E. porteriana, E. prostrata, E. pubentissima, E. purpurea, E. radians, E. rayturneri, E. revoluta, E. roemeriana, E. rosescens, E. schizoloba, E. serpens, E. serpillifolia, E. serrata, E. serrula, E. setiloba, E. simulans, E. spathulata, E. stictospora, E. strictior, E. telephioides, E. terracina, E. tetrapora, E. texana, E. theriaca, E. thymifolia, E. tithymaloides, E. trachysperma, E. trichotoma, E. vallis-mortae, E. velleriflora, E. vermiculata, E. villifera, E. virgata, E. wrightii, E. yaquiana
Synonyms Poinsettia dentata
Name authority Michaux: Fl. Bor.-Amer. 2: 211. (1803)
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