Euphorbia bulleyana Diels; E. cyanophylla H. Léveillé; E. erythrocoma H. Léveillé; E. porphyrastra Handel-Mazzetti; E. rubriflora H. Léveillé; E. seriocarpa Handel-Mazzetti.
Herbs, perennial, erect, 20-70 cm tall. Rootstock usually extensively rhizomatous, rarely a shallowly buried subglobose tuber, rhizome 3-5 mm thick, tuber to 5 cm. Stems mostly single, less often clustered, 3-7 mm thick, sometimes branched, usually mostly glabrous. Leaves alternate; stipules absent; basal scale-leaves few; petiole indistinct, short and broadly winged; leaf blade ovate-oblong to elliptic, very variable, 2-7 × 0.6-1.2 cm, leathery or almost so, base attenuate-cuneate, margin entire, apex acute or obtuse; midrib prominent on both surfaces, lateral veins not reaching margin. Primary involucral leaves 3-7(-12), light red or orange, less often yellow, long elliptic to elliptic, base attenuate, apex rounded or acuminate, primary rays 3-7, 2-4 cm; cyathophylls 2, usually red or red-purple, much varied, rounded or subtruncate at base, usually rounded or subrounded at apex. Cyathium involucre cuplike, ca. 3 × 3.5 mm, lobes rounded, white pilose at margin and inside; glands 4, brown, rounded. Male flowers many, exserted from involucre. Female flower: ovary pedicellate and extended out of cup, smooth, glabrous; styles free; style arms peltate, slightly 2-lobed. Fruiting pedicel 4-5 mm; capsule globose, ca. 4 × 4 mm, smooth, glabrous. Seeds ovoid-globose, 2.5-3 × ca. 2 mm, dark gray or gray-brown, adaxial surface light striate; caruncle peltate, extremely shortly stipitate. Fl. and fr. Jun-Sep.
Sparse forests, scrub, meadows; 2500-4900 m. Sichuan, Xizang, Yunnan [Bhutan, N India, Kashmir, Myanmar, Nepal].
This species varies much in the color of involucral leaves from yellowish red to red. There is also significant variation in the nature of the rootstock, which can be either extensively rhizomatous or form a thick tuber. Most material including that from China belongs to Euphorbia griffithii var. griffithii; E. griffithii var. bhutanica (Fischer) Long is restricted to Bhutan.
The root is used medicinally.