Euphorbia antiquorum

commonly known as: square milk hedge, square spurge • Hindi: tidhara-sehud, त्रिधार tridhara • Kannada: bontekalli, darekalli, jadekalli, mundukalli • Malayalam: caturakkalli, chatirakkalli • Marathi: थुवर thuvar, तिधारी थोर tidhari thor, तिधारी निवडुंग tidhari nivadunga • Sanskrit: स्नुह् snuhu, वज्रकाण्टक vajrakantaka • Tamil: சதுரக்கள்ளி chaturakalli, கள்ளி kalli, கண்டீரவம் kantiravam, kodiravam, tiruvargalli • Telugu: బొమ్మజెముడు bommajemudu, బొంతజెముడు bontha jemudu, bontha kalli, pedda jemudu ;
Here's a description from Dr. Almeida's flora ..." Involucres 3-nate, forming small pedunculate cymes, the central flower sessile, female , the two lateral on long stout pedicels; bracteoles numerous, laciniate; glands 5,large, broader than long. Stamens numerous. Capsules nearly1 cm in diameter; cocci compressed, glabrous; style 2 -fid. " Flowers- Feb to May.
Succulent shrub, often planted in gardens and rockeries
The woody spiny species of Euphorbia can be separated as under:
Stem rounded, not angled or winged:....  E. nivulia
Stem angled or winged
   Angles not produced into wing, spirally arranged:....... E. neriifolia
Angles produced into wings
Wings 3-4
          wings running straight, sinuate, regularly dentate,......E. antiquorum
          wings running spirally, .........
E. tortilis
      Wings 5-6, undulate...........
E. royleana
thorny Euphorbia sp.: descriptions match this thorny shrub as Euphorbia antiquorum. I suspect this to be a different species owing to the colour of flowers. Please help to solve this. Could this be E. tortilis?
Location: Sathyamangalam wls; 300 msl
Date: 15 Dec 2010 
- I would go with E. antiquurum, because the angles are distinctly 3-winged, the wings are running almost straight. In E. tortilis the angles are not that promently winged, they are lobulate with stout paired spines on lobes, and most importantly the angles are spirally twisted like we have in E. neriifolia where of course the angles are not that prominents, and there are 5 spiral rows.
- the young inflorescence appears green. once the ivary is formed it would impart the reddish/ purplish tone.
 - ..  cleared my doubt on inflorescence colour.
- These plants are from the same locality. Kindly excuse me for mixing two species(?) in the same post. Please guide me in this morphology of Euphorbia spp.
   The previous plant posted have straight grooves and not that of E. antiquorum. Is this any physical variation or totally the species is different?
- .. , I happened to see E. antiquorum L. at Rani baug, Mumbai on 6 Feb 2011. Attaching the pictures of the one identifed by Dr. .. as l E. Antiquorum L. matching with type.  Just next to it is another species which
as Sir said goes as E. antiquorum, but it is not matching the type. Attaching that too for comparison.
To me both your sets do not match, but perhaps the second set is close to E. antiquorum.  Hope this helps!
- Here is the lectotype of Euphorbia antiquorum L. Lectotype : Herb. Clifford: 196, Euphorbia 1 (BM-000628669)
Designated by: Wijnands in Bot. Commelins : 97 (1983) You can clearly make out which is the real Euphorbia antiquorum.
   There is another species called Euphorbia royleana. Kindly check your plant with that description. I am not sure if this plant is found in South India but it is supposed to be widespread from Pakistan to Taiwan. I assume I have seen it in Uttarakhand as well as Rajasthan.
- Just wanted to add. Euphorbia is a very big group and one most interesting thing is, the genus Euphorbia has two type species, Euphorbia antiquorum and Euphirbia serrata. I never heard a genus with two types before. If anyone else knows then please do add to our information.
   Kew has a list of around over 5000 names of which only ~2000 names are accepted. That itself depicts the taxonomic complications here.

- Your two sets of plants seem to be the same E. antiquorum , only the matter of older and younger branches: All have distinctly 3-winged stems with straight wings.
..  your first three plants are E. antiquorum without any doubt, but there is no reason to confuse the fourth photograph. It is without any wings and with spines which are spirally arranged. It should be E. neriifolia.
This key from Flora of China should help in separating often confused species
- Thanks for the detail. I totally forgot about neriifolia. If you look at the second group of pics shared by  ..., I think there are two species. Secondly, in the lectotype, the wings are not straight. I have seen both of these plants myself in gardens, and I always thought one of them to be hybrid. But you are more experienced so you must be having a better idea.
- Perhaps this image should clarify what I meant by straight and spirally running wings. E. tortilis has spirally running and E. antiquorum straight.
If you look carefully the type specimen cited by you also has straight wings.
- Here is my photograph where you can see both young and old branches in the same plant.
- Thanks for sharing the pic and link. I understood what you meant. I just imagine if those contractions and swelling are due to environmental factors or that is a consistent character of this taxa? because that character is also evident in image of the Lectotype. Undoubtedly Euphorbias are complicated!!
- Yes ..., the environmental factors might play a role in the morphology of this genus. From ..'s statement and ..'s pictures, its clear that this Euphorbia antiquorum have much variations. However the plant does not matches with E.royleana. What I had posted are young and old plants of the same species.
- Yes, I also think that just because of dryness the tip of these plants do get constricted and at the same time, the wings on the stem get constricted as well. But there are some taxa in Euphorbia and others too, in which such characters are genotypic. Hope you understand my point there. Yes the plant was not E. royleana. As I said before, I completely forgot about E. neriifolia.
Euphorbia is very complicated, jut put together Euphorbia thymifolia and Euphorbia cotinifolia and without flowers and latex, you dont find anything common!!
identification no060311sn2:  date/time:feb11
plant habit:looks like cactii
other info:red fruits at the tip
Euphorbia antiquorum.
I have seen this in Mulshi.
Will wait for others comments.
Could you tell me the locality of this plant. Thanks.

Aamby valley rd., Lonavala, Pune
Name: Euphorbia antiquorum L.
Family: Euphorbiaceae
Date: 03 March 2011
Location: Namangalam RF, Chennai
Altitude: c. 10 ASL
Locally abundant having distinct 3-angled stem. Is my id right? 
- Yes .., you are right
- Here's a description from Dr. Almeida's flora ..." Involucres 3-nate, forming small  pedunculate cymes, the central flower sessile, female , the two lateral on long stout pedicels; bracteoles numerous, laciniate; glands 5,large, broader than long. Stamens numerous. Capsules nearly1 cm in diameter; cocci compressed, glabrous; style 2 -fid. "  Flowers- Feb to May.
- There is some confusion. In Euphorbia cyathium has numerous male flowers, each with one stamen. So statement about numerous stamens is wrong.
- Yes sir, but here is assumed that we know the cyathium has numerous male flowers which are nothing but stamens and so numerous stamens !
- But to say numerous stamens would be wrong. We can say numerous male flowers. (or we can simply omit; all species of Euphorbia have numerous male flowers in each cyathium). We can't be technically wrong.
Euphorbia antiquorum from Delhi and Panchkula: Our recent visit to Cactus Garden Panchkula further clarified the identity of Succulent shrub or tree like Euphorbias. I realised that in my earlier post in November 2010, I had mixed up photographs of two different species: E. antiquorum and E. trigona.
    I am uploading them now separately.
    Here are photographs of E. antiquorum have 3-4 winged stems, with wings running almost straight but constricted into segments; ridges of wings somewhat dentate, spines in pairs, up to 6 mm long; leaves 2-5 cm long, obovate, orbicular to obovate-oblong, early caducous.
   related species E. lactea has stems with white band on the faces between the wings.
Euphorbia for ID : 200611 : AK-1:  Taken in the Cacti Garden, Ramoji Film City, Hyderabad on the 23rd of Nov, 2008.
Yes Euphorbia antiquorum
Really nice specimen with flowers
Euphorbia for ID : 260611 : AK-1: Taken at Ramoji Film City, Hyderabad on the 23rd of Nov, 2008 in their
Cacti Garden. 

english names please: I am working on a document which contains the invasive species of plants in and around forests and villages of Karnataka. I have the local kannada names, but I need the english equivalents to them. Could someone please help??
The names are Kalli, Gandhi mullu, chagate/ chogate, Puliguthi.
Please do let me know as soon as possible. Thanks in advance !

The name 'kalli' (in Tamil) is generally applied to any cactus/succulent plant, including mostly all Opuntias and almost all Euphorbias.
If you could upload the pictures of plants here, things may be easier and more accurate.
Sorry I do not have the photos to upload for better confirmation. Just one query... do people use Euphorbia for fencing purposes? If yes, then thats the name I require. Any idea about the other names - puliguthi especially, because its the first time im hearing this name. I have got the other names, thanks to all of you.
I have seen live fences of Euphorbia antiquorum in Tamil Nadu.
Kannada names for this species can be found at.
Of course, there are various other species that are planted along fences, too...such as E. tirucalli, Cereus peruvianus etc. But the name 'kalli' கள்ளி generally refers to E. antiquorum. It is (the latex) known for its abuse as female infanticide, in the past, in some parts of TN.
I have no idea about the name 'puliguthi'. ... (marked a Bcc to him) may be of help to you. And, you may try to describe the plant by mentioning some of its special feature/use etc.
Euphorbia in bloom, ID requested: Found this Euphorbia in Arsikere, Karnataka covered with tiny was a beautiful sight.
Can someone id this species ?
I hope Euphorbia antiquorum
Closely similar to Euphorbia trigona in which segments longer and angles running straight. Here are my uploads on two
Hooghly Today : Euphorbia antiquorum Linnaeus: This seems to be the Euphorbia antiquorum Linnaeus = BAJVARAN (বাজবরণ) in Bengali.
Here are photographs of E. antiquorum have 3-4 winged stems, with wings running almost straight but constricted into segments; ridges of wings somewhat dentate, spines in pairs, up to 6 mm long; leaves 2-5 cm long, obovate, orbicular to obovate-oblong, early caducous.
Related species E. lactea has stems with white band on the faces between the wings.   

Yes Sir.
Attached are pictures of Euphorbia antiquorum from Sagar Upvan, Mumbai in February 2013.
Good photographs.,Nasik-DSCN1337.JPG?part=0.2&view=1&vt=ANaJVrHPbkTLT0J3AHAsnas3-Sma9hNSqSZ59uzMig6rCZ2_2Gfq5GUMwFxUoUpAv775PeYylZGoxvy8b5GGsO78a6IDbFWe6OgalSAlMaYdoZYZ36l71ss,Nasik-DSCN1335.JPG?part=0.1&view=1&vt=ANaJVrGt0b-Nc2Zzks_q-nw5909-EotaqaUxJDAfW4tzKKTgzLgeSF8dEIsitkQgOkbW2VanpX0Khb1XdfJGj5YQLvRAL35hbEAxF05pyowi2yfgKGiMrbA
Euphorbia seen in Nasik.
Kindly confirm id.
Yes. nice.
I too agreed with ...
Euphorbiaceae Fortnight : For ID : Sri Lanka : 071113 : AK-28 : Attachments (2). 3 posts by 2 authors.
Another seen in Sri Lanka in a hotel garden.
Id please.
This appears to be Euphorbia antiquorum L. But I am not sure. More complete picture of the tree with leaves and inflorescence would help in identification.

Euphorbia antiquorum from Ramoji Film City.
Nice pictures ..., How to differentiate this E. antiquorum from that of E. trigona?
E. trigona differs from E. antiquorum in more greener stems, straighter wings and smaller leaves, 5-6 mm long, which persist for longer time and more uniformly distributed on wings; efi thread

Key has been updated on the website
Yes, the photos agree with Euphorbia antiquorum L., except that the fruits shown here appears to be purplish (if the photo depicts the correct colour), whereas usually in E. antiquorum the fruits are yellowish to yellowish orange. Please check 
Pictures were taken during evening, nearing sunset.
Colours should not be much different than the real ones.
Euphorbia antiquorum
Tamhini. Mulshi.
Euphorbia antiquorum seen at Jijamata Udyan, Mumbai.
Kindly validate.
Okay, good shots.
Megamalai :: Euphorbia antiquorum L. :: Euphorbiaceae : Attachments (5). 2 posts by 2 authors.
Name: Euphorbia antiquorum L.
Tamil Name: Sadurakkalli
Place: Theni dt., TN
Alt.: 480 m asl
Habitat: scrub and rocky
Date: 28 Sep 2013
Correct me if my ID is wrong. 
 Euphorbia antiquorum----for sharing and validation : 2 posts by 2 authors. Attachments (1)
pic taken at ambyvalley rd.,lonavala, in april 14.
yes it is Euphorbia antiquorum L.
Hooghly-skMAY09/10 Euphorbia antiquorum L. : 1 post by 1 author. Attachments (4)
Images by tspkumar

TSP-DEC2015-51-224:Images of Euphorbia antiquorum (Euphorbiaceae) : 5 posts by 3 authors. Attachments (6)

It is my pleasure to share few images of Euphorbia antiquorum (Euphorbiaceae) 

Habit: Succulent, laticiferous, cladodous shrub. 

Habitat: Scrub forests. 

Sighting: Chikmagalur, Karnataka, about 800 msl 

Date: 17-12-2014 

Euphorbia for id : 10 posts by 4 authors. Attachments (2)
These are two images of Euphorbia taken at Anaikatti (near coimbatore) and Kanyakumari. Request id at the species level if possible.
It is a mixture. The first photo is of a Cactus and the second we have to see.
Thank you. the first one which  you have said is from Cacataceae, is a tall, columnar one with branches. It was more than 10 ft tall and so I thought it could be an Euphorbia sp. I guess that white patch (areoles?) from where spines start was somehow missed by me, which should have told me it is a cactus.
Euphorbia species in eFloraofindia (with details/ keys from published papers/ regional floras/ FRLHT/ FOI/ Biotik/ efloras/ books etc., where ever available on net)
E. antjquorum
This looks like Euphorbia antiquorum L. The only difference from that species is that the cyathia are solitary, whereas in E. antiquorum the cyathia are usually in triads. There will be a primary peduncle with three peduncled cyathia at the apex. Please check whether there are such triiad cyathia in the population at Anaikatty. Further check how many angles are there for each branch. A photograph of the whole plant would help in correct identification.
Thank you so very much for the identification. I shall pull out the image of the entire plant and post it in a day or two.
Here is another shot of the E antiquorum and a rather poor image of the entire tree. I was so taken up by the snails that i did not realise that the plant was not so well in focus. One part of the plant was rather old and the flowers were on the younger and newer branches. Taken in 2009 and so my memory could well be failing me in the accuracy of the description.
Location- Kanyakumari, close to a beach on the eastern side. Attachments (2)
Here is one that I know for sure is the whole plant of E antiquorum Attachments (1)
EUPHORBIA SP ( EUPHORBIA GRANDIALATA ?? ) : 5 posts by 3 authors. Attachments (2)
Attaching two images of a cactus (Euphorbia sp) with flowers. Can it be Euphorbia grandialata ?

I think it is Euphorbia lacei (Syn. Euphorbia trigona) only which is common in our area
This is not E. grandialata. It could not be confirmed. With its trigonous stems, it looks like  E. antiquorum, if it is indigenous to India.  
Thank you ..., There is only minor difference between E.antiquorum and E.lacei, only on closer observation. Both species are common in our area.

Help identify this Euphorbia : 8 posts by 4 authors. 4 images.
Photographed in Satara city, Maharashtra

Pl. check comparative images at 

Appears a close match for E. antiquorum except for flower colour. Let me know the id 

Can it be Euphorbia lactea
Small segments hint at that. 
At least one source ...Dave's garden has a picture with yellow flowers. 
No white bands on stem. So not a lactea for sure

I also feel closer to Euphorbia antiquorum as per keys and details herein.

This is Euphorbia antiquorum L.