Zigzag plant, devil’s backbone
Light: sun to partial shade
Height: 6-8 feet
Spread: 3-4 feet
USDA Hardiness Zones: 9-11
Origin: Tropical Americas
The variegated zigzag plant (Euphorbia tithymaloides ‘Variegatus’) is a fun houseplant, easy to grow and enjoy.
True to the name, this plant has medium-green stems with an unusual zigzag pattern.
One- to 3-inch-long leaves emerge from the outer zigzag of the stems. The lanceolate-shaped leaves are a lovely medium to light green with white and pink variegation on the edges. The leaves are sessile, attaching precisely to branches.
Zigzag plants prefer sandy, well-draining soil. When grown indoors, this plant will rarely flower. Like its cousin, the poinsettia, the zigzag plant has white latex sap that can irritate skin; care is advised when handling.
Variegated zigzag plants can be seen in the desert biome at Franklin Park Conservatory and Botanical Gardens.
— Barbara Arnold
Franklin Park Conservatory
This article originally appeared on The Columbus Dispatch: Plant Primer: Zigzag plant boasts leaves with an unusual pattern