Scientific NameChamaesyce maculata
Synonyms (former Scientific Names):
Chamaesyce mathewsii Small
Chamaesyce tracyi Small
Spotted spurge is a summer annual that spreads by seeds and germinates throughout the summer. The plants reaches a height of up to 30 inches, though it is most often a low growing weed, which forms dense mats. It flowers from mid-summer until fall. It is found throughout the southeastern United States, and has been introduced to the western United States.
The leaves of spotted spurge are opposite in arrangement. They are ovate or oblong, and may be very finely toothed. They have a distinguishable red splotch midway down the leaf, on the center vein. The reach a length of up to 1.5 inches.
Spotted spurge can be distinguished by the radial mat it forms. It also emits a white sap when broken, which makes it distinguishable. Their leaves are distinguished by a dark red mark down the center vein.
Flower Seed Head
The flowers of spotted spurge often go unnoticed. They are small, at about .06 inches in diameter. They are usually white or greenish, but may appear reddish. They are grouped in small, flowerlike cups in the leaf axils. Flowers appear in mid-summer and bloom until fall.
The fruit of spotted spurge is about 1/16 of an inch long, and contains one seed, about 1/25 of an inch long. The fruit is often hairy in appearance.
Spotted spurge is found throughout North America. It is native to the Southeastern United States, but is now found throughout the United States.
prostrate and nonwoody
Thorns or Spines
Approximate Flower Diameter
Dominant Flower Color
Stem Cross Section
round or oval