How to Stake a Jatropha Tree


The jatropha tree (Jatropha integerrima), also known as the firecracker plant or the peregrina, hails from Cuba. The plant thrives in USDA hardiness zones 10b through 11, according to the University of Florida. It's known for its lobed foliage and brightly colored flowers that sometimes attract hummingbirds and butterflies. Staking the shrub helps the plant maintain an erect posture, especially for newly planted shrubs that may have been weakened by the transplanting process.

Step 1

Select stakes at a garden store or nursery. Stakes should measure approximately 8 feet in length. Metal stakes are ideal, according to West Virginia University, but wood stakes 3 inches wide at the end and 2 inches wide at the point will also suffice.

Step 2

Measure a distance of 18 inches from the jatropha tree's trunk.

Step 3

Pound the stake 3 feet deep into the ground using a hammer or mallet. For best results, situate the stake on the side of the jatropha tree from which the wind blows. This gives the best support against wind trauma.

Step 4

Tie garden twine between the stake and the jatropha tree's trunk. Secure it so there are a couple inches of slack in the twine to allow for some movement of the trunk. To prevent damage to the jatropha shrub, the University of Minnesota suggests using strips of carpet between the twine and the shrub bark.

Step 5

Remove the stake and twine after a year. The jatropha tree will be sufficiently established to no longer need support.

Tips and Warnings

  • The seeds of the jatropha shrub are toxic. Don't grow this shrub within the reach of small children, according to the University of Florida.

Things You'll Need

  • Stakes
  • Ruler
  • Hammer or mallet
  • Garden twine
  • Carpet strips (optional)


  • "Taylor's Guide to Shrubs: How to Select and Grow More than 500 Ornamental and Useful Shrubs for Privacy, Ground Covers, and Specimen Plantings"; Kathleen Fisher; 2001
  • University of Florida: Jatropha
  • West Virginia University: Planting Trees and Shrubs
  • University of Minnesota: Planting and Transplanting Trees and Shrubs
Keywords: stake jatropha tree, stake jatropha shrub, staking a jatropha

About this Author

Josh Duvauchelle is an editor and journalist with more than 10 years' experience. His work has appeared in various magazines, including "Honolulu Magazine," which has more paid subscribers than any other magazine in Hawaii. He graduated with honors from Trinity Western University, holding a Bachelor of Arts in professional communications, and earned a certificate in applied leadership and public affairs from the Laurentian Leadership Centre.