Euphorbia rigida, commonly called Blue Euphorbia, Gopher Plant, or Silver Spurge, makes a great late winter to early spring showing, and then the stems dry up and need to be pruned. It’s sort of a one-hit wonder—beautiful for a couple of months and then really bad looking. Even so, I think it is worth having in the garden. The blue-green leaves and chartreuse flowers make it a striking accent plant.
The E. rigida in my garden became another casualty of our extreme 2007 summer heat. Even with its preference for full sun, the plant just couldn't take the prolonged hot spell. Since it is supposed to self-seed, I have been hoping to see some new little plants, but so far, nothing. I think it’s too late to expect some new plants, at least for this season.
Our local nurseries only carry the E. rigida when it is in bloom, so it is available only a short time, usually in early February. It’s very hard to find because it sells out so fast. Although it is a perennial shrub, many folks use it as late winter color, and then they discard it to make way for other annuals. Since it looks so bad the rest of the year, the nurseries can’t even give it away after the blooms fade.