Crop Protection Online > Pests - Weed biology<br> <sub>Agro-region: Denmark</sub> - Euphorbia peplus L.
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21.7 2024 undefined

Weed biology
Agro-region: Denmark

Euphorbia peplus L. Previous page Next page

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Can be mistaken for

Euphorbia helioscopia L., which has somewhat larger dicotyledon leaves and true leaves.


Oval with entire leaf margins. Stalked. Smooth surface. Length approx. 5 mm.

True leaves
Inverted egg-shaped with entire leaf margins. Stalked. Smooth surface. The true leaves contain latex, which can be seen by squeezing a torn-off leaf. Length approx. 4 mm.

Mature plant
Petty Spurge is a small plant with a 10-20 cm high, erect stem, which is forked at the top, hence its Danish name “forked Spurge”. The entire plant contains large amounts of latex. Petty Spurge is distinguishable from Sun Spurge by its leaves not being finely toothed on the extreme parts of the leaf. Seed production: Up to approx. 300 seeds per plant.

Inverted Beetle-shaped with or without attached porcelain-like basal appendage, the “head”. Each of the 6 sides of the surface has 1-4 deep, circular or oval pits. The surface is covered with a dull, foam plastic-like layer, thickest on the raised surface between the pits. Thousand grain weight 0.6 g.


Propagation and dispersal
Only through seeds.

Summer annual.


The species is found throughout Denmark and is mainly found in open and/or late sown spring crops. Petty Spurge is usually among the less important weed species.

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Names in different languages

Danish : Vortemælk, gaffel
German : Gartenwolfsmilch
English : Petty Spurge
Latin : Euphorbia peplus L.
Norwegian : Byvortemjølk
Swedish : Rävtörel

Euphorbia peplus L.: Seedling
Euphorbia peplus L.: Early stage
Early stage
Euphorbia peplus L.: Flower
Euphorbia peplus L.: Mature plant
Mature plant
Euphorbia peplus L.: Seeds

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