30" x 40" Acrylic on canvas
I was unfamiliar with Euphorbia (yoo-FOR-bee-uh MIL-ee-eye) as far as I knew, when I came across this specimen at the United States Botanic Garden in Washington D.C. I was unaware for some time that it was actually a spurge (which I had indeed cared for a couple of large potted spurges many years ago). Color was the most alluring aspect of this plant for my artist' eye, as I was enchanted by the brilliant pink flower contrast to the lime to gray-green powdery patina of the rubbery leaves. Also of note were the spikes beneath the rounded leaves. It is these rather long spikey stems which give it the nickname, the 'Christ Plant' or 'Crown of Thorns'. Legend associates it with the crown of thorns worn by Christ. Of note, it is native to the exotically remote island continent of Madagascar.