Euphorbia peplus var. peplus
An erect or sometimes ascending glabrous somewhat fleshy annual herb up to 30 cm tall, but more commonly 5-20 cm tall, unbranched or often 2-branched from the base. Stem-leaves alternate, petiolate, the petioles 1-8 mm long; leaf-blades elliptic-obovate, obovate or suborbicular, (0.3-) 0.7-2.2 x 0.2-1.2 cm, obtuse or rounded at the apex, cuneate or attenuate into the petiole at the base, entire, membranous, obscurely penninerved. Pseudumbel 3-rayed, the.rays many times bifid, usually with a few axillary rays below the pseudumbel; pseudumbel-leaves 3, whorled, usually resembling the upper stem-leaves, but more shortly petiolate; ray-leaves opposite, sessile or shortly petiolate, somewhat obliquely ovate, rhombic-ovate or ovate-deltoid, subacute or obtuse at the apex, cuneate or subtruncate at the base, entire, progressively smaller distally. Cyathia pedunculate, yellowish, the peduncles c. 0.5 mm long. Glands semilunar, truncate on the outer edge and with 2 slender subulate horns in length exceeding the width of the gland; glands greenish, horns pale yellow. Fruit trilobite, 1.75 x 2 mm, smooth, but with 2 narrow parallel longitudinal dorsal wings per lobe, pale green. Styles spreading, united at the base, 0.25 mm long, bifnd. Seeds ovoid-cylindric and roundly hexagonal, 1.25 x 0.8 x 0.75 mm, with a longitudinal groove on each of the 2 inner facets, and 2-3 and 3-4 pits on the lateral and dorsal facets, pale grey on the ridges, dark grey in the grooves and pits, with an obliquelyiet conical white caruncle.
Fl. & Fr. Per.: March-Oct.
Syntypes: Europe, in vegetable gardens, specimen no. 630/24 in Herb. Linn. (LINN); Hort. Cliff. no. 16 (BM).
Distribution: Macaronesia, Europe, N. Africa and S.W. & Central Asia (extending E. to N. Iran & Turkmenia). Introduced in S, SE & E Asia, Australia and N. & C. America. Another variety occurs in the Mediterranean Region. Very common on clayey sands in moist places, on waste ground and in gardens; near sea-level to 8500'/2600 m.