This section is from the book "The Gardener's Monthly And Horticulturist V18", by Thomas Meehan. See also: Four-Season Harvest: Organic Vegetables from Your Home Garden All Year Long.
This being one of the most useful winter-flowering plants, it is now deserving of special attention. Plants struck in the beginning of June should now have made growth at least four feet in height and strong in proportion, with plenty of laterals. If the plants have hitherto grown amongst other stove subjects which required shade, they should be removed at once to a house or pit where they can be fully exposed to the light and sun, and kept as near the glass as possible, with plenty of aid admitted during favorable weather, so that the wood may get thoroughly matured, as on this depends chiefly their successful flowering. The watering of this plant is also a point of importance, for if it is allowed to suffer for the want of this element,-it will lose all its bottom foliage, which would greatly diminish its effect when in flower.
One rarely sees this beautiful plant occupying the position it should hold in our stoves. We not unfrequently find it grown amongst the general collection of stove plants, and sometimes at the north side of the house, and consequently very much shaded. What is the result? A weak, drawn, and not half-ripened growth, with a few miserable flowers at the points instead of fine racemes of orange scarlet, from fifteen to eighteen inches in length, which would be the result under better cultivation.
To grow the Euphorbia well the principle batch of cuttings should be put in, not later than the first week in June. Another batch may be put in later for a succession. The cuttings should be taken off with a heel, and inserted round the edges of pots filled with peat and sand, plunged in a gentle bottom heat, and kept close and shaded until well rooted, when they should be potted off, "either singly or three or four in a pot," in a compost consisting of fibrous loam, peat, and leaf mould in equal parts, with the addition of some silver sand. The plants should then be well-watered, and again kept close and shaded, till they take root in the fresh soil.
When they commence to grow they should be gradually exposed to the air and sun, and no shade used afterwards except for a day or two after re-potting. The plants may be re-potted up to the end of August or beginning of September, but not later.
The back wall or the spare end of a succession Pine pit will be found a most suitable place for the successful growth of the Euphorbia. A wreath of Euphorbia, intermixed with some neatly wired bells of Roman Hyacinth, has a charming effect in a lady's hair at a ball or dinner party. - Gardener's Record.