Grow A Medusa’s Head Plant In Your Garden: Euphorbia Flanaganii

  • By: Succulents Plants
  • Date: January 18, 2023
  • Time to read: 6 min.
Medusa's Head Plant Euphorbia Flanaganii
Photo By Kseniya_Milner

If you’re looking for an eye-catching new plant for your garden, look no further than Euphorbia flanaganii, the medusa head plant. This unique succulent is originally from South Africa and features spiral-shaped clusters of small green leaves. It’s a great way to add a unique look to your garden and make it stand out from the crowd. In this article, we’ll dive into the details of this particular plant to teach you all about Euphorbia flanaganii, including where it should be planted, how to care for it, and more.

What is Euphorbia Flanaganii?

Euphorbia Flanaganii, also known as Medusa’s Head, is a unique and exciting succulent species native to South Africa. It grows in a single rosette, often with many stems branching off from the center. The fleshy stems, which range from grey-green to a burgundy hue depending on the environment, are covered with tiny white hairs and have robust, serrated margins.

The most dramatic feature of Euphorbia Flanaganii is its flower head, which looks like a swirling crown of spikes. The flowers are bracts that produce tiny yellow flowers. Flowering usually occurs in the summer months, though not every year. Once the flowers are gone, the bracts remain to give the appearance of a “head” made of multiple circles of spines. This unique feature provides the plant with its name–Medusa’s head.

Euphorbia Flanaganii is an easy-to-care-for plant that does best in well-drained soil that is either sandy or gravelly. It prefers plenty of sunlight but can tolerate some shade. It is a low-maintenance plant that only requires a little water. It can be propagated by division and can also be grown from seed.

If you’re looking for something unique and exciting to add to your garden, consider planting Euphorbia Flanaganii. With its striking appearance and hardy nature, it’s sure to be a hit with you and your visitors!

Where to Plant Euphorbia Flanaganii

When it comes to planting Euphorbia Flanaganii, choosing a spot in your garden with plenty of sun and well-drained soil is best. Be sure to give it room to spread, as these plants can grow up to 12 feet in diameter! Once planted, water thoroughly and moisten the soil, especially in hot summer.

Sunlight Requirements

Euphorbia flanaganii, or Medusa’s Head, is a plant to consider if you’re looking for a show-stopping centerpiece for your garden. Its strange, alien-like shape adds a unique element to the garden. As far as sunlight requirements go, this succulent prefers plenty of light and is best grown in full sun. If your Medusa’s Head is getting too much sun, try growing it in dappled shade. In hotter climates, the plant may need some afternoon protection from the sun. Be sure to water your plant sparingly, as this succulent is prone to rot.

Soil Requirements

Euphorbia flanaganii loves well-drained, sandy soil, so it’s essential to start with suitable soil for your medusa head. Before planting, mix compost into the soil to add some extra fertility and drainage. You can also add some gravel to the mix to improve drainage further. Once the soil has been prepared, plant your medusa head and water it regularly. For best results, ensure the soil never becomes soggy, and add some fertilizer during the growing season.

Caring for Euphorbia Flanaganii

Watering Requirements

Watering Euphorbia flanaganii should be done in moderation. Too much or too little water can be damaging to the plant. In the summer, you should water Euphorbia flanaganii twice a week. You can reduce the frequency to once a week during the cooler months. Make sure the soil is damp but not saturated before each watering. Trusting your finger is an excellent way to ensure your Euphorbia flanaganii is getting the right amount of water. You can stick it around the plant; if the soil is dry an inch below the surface, it is time to water.

Fertilizing Requirements

Euphorbia Flanaganii is relatively easy to care for but needs regular fertilizing. Since this plant is succulent, you should use a cactus fertilizer to provide the necessary nutrients. Apply a teaspoon of fertilizer every month during the spring and summer months. During the cooler months, in the Fall and Winter, you should cut back on fertilizer and only give it one teaspoon every two months. Read the directions on your fertilizer to ensure that you are applying the correct amount.

Propagation Techniques

Are you looking to add a unique and stunning addition to your garden? Look no further than the Euphorbia Flanaganii, or “medusa head” plant. This show-stopping member of the euphorbia family is an excellent choice for the garden and propagating it is relatively easy. Here’s what you need to know about breeding the Euphorbia Flanaganii.

The first step in propagating your Euphorbia Flanaganii is to find a suitable mother plant. Look for a healthy, well-established specimen with no signs of disease or pest infestation. After you’ve identified the perfect mother plant, you’re ready to start propagating.

The easiest way to propagate the medusa head is via stem cuttings. Cut a stem at least 10 cm long, ensuring it has at least two sets of leaves. Then, dip the end of the stem in a rooting hormone and place the stem in moist, well-draining soil. The stem should be partially buried in the soil to ensure good contact with the rooting hormone.

Cover the pot with a clear plastic bag to encourage root growth to create a mini-greenhouse. Place the bagged pot in a warm, sunny spot, but avoid direct sunlight. Ensure you keep the soil moist but not soggy during the rooting process. After a few weeks, you should see signs of root growth.

If you’d prefer to propagate the medusa head via seeds, it’s a slightly more involved process. Start by collecting the mature seed capsules and letting them dry out. Then, break open the tablets and carefully remove the seeds. Place the seeds on a damp paper towel, and change the paper towel every few days until the seeds begin to germinate.

Once the seedlings have formed, plant the tiny plants in a shallow tray and give them a sunny spot to grow. Keep the soil in the tray moist but not soggy, and you should see your medusa head seedlings growing and thriving in no time.

Common Pests and Diseases

Euphorbia flanaganii, commonly referred to as the Medusa head is a popular and beautiful ornamental succulent. However, despite its complex nature, it can still be prone to pests and diseases. Common issues include aphids, scale insects, root mealybugs, and fungal or bacterial infections.

Aphids are tiny green, yellow, or black pests that feed on the juice of succulent plants like the Medusa head. They can be easily spotted and identified by the sticky honeydew substance they excrete. To remove them, insecticides such as neem oil or insecticidal soap can be used.

Scale insects, which feed on the sap from succulent plants, form protective shells over their bodies. These shells can be difficult to remove, but insecticidal soap can be used to kill them.

Root mealybugs are often found in the soil around a Medusa head. These bugs feed on the plant’s roots and can cause stunted growth. To control them, use an insecticide such as neem oil or insecticidal soap.

Fungal and bacterial diseases can also affect a Medusa head if the soil is too moist or there is insufficient airflow around the plant. Fungal infections like powdery mildew and root rot can lead to wilting and leaf spots. Bacterial diseases such as bacterial blight and wilt can also affect a Medusa head, causing yellow or brown leaf spots and black spots on the stems. To prevent these diseases, ensure that the soil is not too wet and that the plant receives adequate air circulation and light.


In conclusion, the Euphorbia Flanaganii is a colorful and unique succulent that can add color to any garden. It is easy to care for, with basic requirements for sunlight, soil, water, and fertilizer. To propagate, remove one of the heads and plant it in a new pot. It is also essential to watch out for common pests and diseases. With a bit of care, this beautiful plant is sure to thrive. So, if you’re looking for something exciting and low-maintenance to add to your garden, the Euphorbia Flanaganii is an excellent choice.


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