Euphorbia punicea

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Euphorbia punicea - flame of Jamaica
Common name: flame of Jamaica (English)
Family: Euphorbiaceae (Spurge)
Distribution: Jamaica
Life form: Shrub/sub-shrub
Description: This evergreen succulent shrub to small tree is endemic to Jamaica. Although first described in 1788, E. punicea has yet to find it’s way into many South Florida gardens, even though it thrives on limestone, needs no irrigation and is a very light feeder. Its slow growth, upright habit, and branching structure make pruning irrelevant. Flame of Jamaica has the potential to bloom almost year-round. What we see as a flower show is actually an odd inflorescence surrounded by showy bracts, or modified leaves. These bracts can range in color from orangish-pink to scarlet to crimson red. Warblers and honey bees visit throughout the day, taking advantage of the abundant sweet nectar. Plant Euphorbia punicea in well-drained soil, or even a rocky hole with full exposure to the sun.


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