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Canary Island spurge (Euphorbia canariensis, German/Deutsch: Kanaren Wolfsmilch)#

Hercules Club
Hercules club, 1997, © Markus Duschek

The Canary Island spurge or "Hercules club" is a succulent member of the genus Euphorbia and family Euphorbiaceae, endemic to the Canary Islands: It is found on the narrow coastal belt, from sea level to 1,100 meters.

It is a small tree, growing to between 3 and 4 meters high. It is made up of fleshy quadrangular or pentagonal trunks that look like cacti. The leaves grow in clusters of three or four and have inward-turning spines. It produces reddish-green flowers.

The latex, which contains diterpenes, is poisonous, but diterpenes form the basis for biologically important compounds such as retinol, retinal, and phytol. They are known to be antimicrobial and antiinflammatory.