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From Wikipedia, the free encyclopedia

Euphorbia peplus
Scientific classification
Kingdom: Plantae
Division: Magnoliophyta
Class: Magnoliopsida
Order: Malpighiales
Family: Euphorbiaceae
Genus: Euphorbia
Species: E. peplus
Binomial name
Euphorbia peplus

Euphorbia peplus (Petty Spurge, Radium Weed[1] or Cancer Weed[2]) is a species of Euphorbia, native to most of Europe, northern Africa, and western Asia, where it typically grows in cultivated arable land, gardens, and other disturbed land.[3][4][5]

It should not be confused with the similarly spelled Euphorbia peplis (Purple Spurge).

It is an annual plant growing to between 5–30 cm tall (most plants growing as weeds of cultivation tend towards the smaller end), with smooth hairless stems. The leaves are oval-acute, 1-3 cm long, with a smooth margin. It has green flowers in three-rayed umbels. The glands, typical of the Euphorbiacae, are kidney-shaped with long thin horns.[5]

The milky latex sap is toxic, and used as a therapeutic agent for the removal of warts on the skin[6]. Recent work also suggests that it may also be effective in treating superficial basal cell carcinomas.[7][8]

Outside of its native range it is very widely naturalised and often invasive, including in Australia, New Zealand, North America, and other countries in temperate and sub-tropical regions.[3]


  1. ^
  2. ^
  3. ^ a b Germplasm Resources Information Network: Euphorbia peplus
  4. ^ Flora Europaea: Euphorbia peplus
  5. ^ a b Blamey, M. & Grey-Wilson, C. (1989). Flora of Britain and Northern Europe. ISBN 0-340-40170-2
  6. ^
  7. ^ Goliath:Skin and Allergy News Sep 07: Plant-based compound shows efficacy against basal cell cs
  8. ^ The Age May 06:Peplin cancer gel shows promise


Up to date as of January 23, 2010

From Wikispecies

Euphorbia peplus


Classification System: APG II (down to family level)

Main Page
Cladus: Eukaryota
Regnum: Plantae
Cladus: Angiospermae
Cladus: Eudicots
Cladus: core eudicots
Cladus: Rosids
Cladus: Eurosids I
Ordo: Malpighiales
Familia: Euphorbiaceae
Subfamilia: Euphorbioideae
Tribus: Euphorbieae
Subtribus: Euphorbiinae
Genus: Euphorbia
Species: Euphorbia peplus


Euphorbia peplus L.

Vernacular names

Deutsch: Garten-Wolfsmilch
Français: Ésule ronde
Hornjoserbsce: Zahrodna mlóčeń
Nederlands: Tuinwolfsmelk
Polski: Wilczomlecz ogrodowy
Svenska: Rävtörel
Türkçe: Küçük sütleğen
中文: 南欧大戟
Wikimedia Commons For more multimedia, look at Euphorbia peplus on Wikimedia Commons.


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