It is often that I think I have nailed identity of Plants only to be Engulfed by the variety and diversity of Flora on Planet Earth. My Euphoria was snuffed quickly by the Genus Euphorbia detailed in the pictures that  follow.

Triangular Spurge  ( English), Vajrakantaka ( Hindi ), Euphorbia antiquorum L.( Scientific Name) is one such Cactus like plant that caught my eye at Lakshman Sagar in Pali District, Rajasthan.

First error was it is not a Cactus but belongs to the vast family of Euphorbiaceae.

typical rock desert look
Euphorbia Inflorescence in February 

Native names as mentioned before are very descriptive provided you know the Language of course. VajraKantaka in Hindi is roughly translated as Thunderbolt Thorns.

Linked to Hindu Mythology and  symbolic “Vajra” is the weapon carried by Indra , the Rain God.

rocky terrain
Flowers and Juicy stems protected by Sharp Thorns

Several species of the Genus are Native to India and inhabit the Rocky deserts of Rajasthan.

I am informed the species is used extensively in the traditional Indian School of Medicine, Ayurveda and through China and South east Asia as well.

While I am certain the Genus is dead on target am not so sure about the species , can anyone help?

Beautiful Flowers

Can it be the Euphorbia neriifolia L. which looks very similar. Both have a much sought after Milky Latex, look like Cactus and have similar flowers.

Even the Flowers are not really Real Flowers but a mix of Faux Petals as well, am I truly deceived ?

Am Enchanted and confused as well. Thank you Euphor(b)ia.


Published by

mukul chand

51 year old entrepreneur who has traveled extensively around the world for work and pleasure , is based in New Delhi, India. A passionate traveler born with a love for flora and fauna, is an active naturalist and amateur photographer. Here he shares his unique insight into Incredible India revealing its mysterious and exotic treasures. Writing from his heart he shares his experiences as he crisscrosses this vast and amazing land.

30 thoughts on “Euphor(b)ia”

  1. nice photographs…your photos have a knack of making one relook at simple plants in a totally different and alive manner… Normally… we miss the beauty of these …looking for something exotic.. A natural photographers eye is something that you are blessed with 🙂

    Liked by 1 person

      1. Wow, I looked all over the place and did not find. But I did find that these euphorb succulents are tremendously adaptable. I think I’ll look some other places tomorrow. Do you know whether this is used for medicine (you probably wrote that already above, it’s past my bedtime…😴)?

        Liked by 1 person

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