Balkan Spurge - Euphorbia oblongata

    Alternative names
    Egg-leaf Spurge and as Oblong Spurge

    Euphorbia oblongata is a hairy, rhizomatous herb growing to a maximum height of just over half a metre. It has oval shaped or narrow leaves with finely toothed edges which are 4 to 6 centimetres long. The foliage is green to yellow-green. The inflorescences hold tiny glandular flowers. The fruit is a spherical capsule about half a centimetre long which contains smooth brown seeds.

    Similar Species

    Several other tall non-native spurges may be found as garden escapes or casual introductions

    Identification difficulty
    ID guidance

    The glands on the cyathium (the cup shaped structure that bears the male and female flowers) are rounded on the outer edge; the ovary and capsule are papillose (with small pimples or warts)

    Recording advice

    Photo of the plant in its habitat, with details of flowers and capsule


    Various habitats including waste and disturbed ground, fields and verges.

    When to see it

    Flowering from May onwards with fruit capsules from July.

    Life History


    UK Status

    This species is widespread and probably becoming more frequent in Britain

    VC55 Status

    Rare in Leicestershire and Rutland. It was not recorded in the 1979 Flora survey of Leicestershire.

    It is not listed in the current checklist (Jeeves, 2011)

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    Leicestershire & Rutland Map

    MAP KEY:

    Yellow squares = NBN records (all known data)
    Coloured circles = NatureSpot records: 2020+ | 2015-2019 | pre-2015

    UK Map