Euphorbia ingens is a very prominent member of the plant community in the veld wherever it occurs. When the rest of the bushveld goes bare in winter, the naboom retains its conspicuous presence without colour change. Wind will elicit hardly any movement from the rigid stems.
In spite of the toxicity of the white latex that emerges promptly from any damage of the green skin on the stems, indigenous populations have found a way of using fire to set the sap before cutting the branches. The main stem is used for making a boat, a door or planks for general use. There is a story that Piet Retief saw King Dingaan sitting on his throne under a big E. ingens tree.
The yellow-green cyathia (flowers) are to be seen on the highest stem ridges late in autumn and to midwinter. Noors honey from this tree is fairly common as the tree produces so much nectar, but the taste is marred by a burning sensation in the mouth.
The fruits are on the plant by the end of winter and some may still be seen near the end of spring (Coates Palgrave, 2002; Van Wyk and Gericke, 2000).