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Planted at Mount Vernon

  • Botanical Garden

  • Hardiness Zones

    Average annual extreme minimum temperature 1976-2005

    This large tropical plant is used for various medicinal and economic purposes. The oil from the nuts is currently being studied as a potential source for biodiesel.

    Latin Name

    Jatropha curcas



    Also Known As

    Physic Nut , Barbados Nut

    Type of Plant





    Max Height: 20'
    Max Spread: 15'


  • Hedge

  • Sunlight Exposure

    Full Sun


  • Drought

  • Toxicity

    Do not ingest
    Skin irritant


    Native Range

    Tropical America


    Washington planted jatropha in 1785 and knew of its purgative qualities.

    Other Details

    Grown by Washington

    Bartlett Tree Expert Company has been working with Mount Vernon Estate since 2011 providing expert arboricultural care and GPS mapping for the estate’s historic trees, as well as support from their research facility.   Mount Vernon is proud to partner with Bartlett Tree Experts and appreciates their sponsorship of George Washington’s Mount Vernon Plant Finder App.

    Bring Washington's Garden Home

    Purchase our historic seeds, collected from plants grown at Mount Vernon and plant them in your own garden.

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