Euphorbia tirucalli: How to Grow and Care for Firesticks, Red Pencil Tree

Euphorbia tirucalli Firesticks, Red Pencil Tree

Scientific name: Euphorbia tirucalli

Common name: Firesticks, Red Pencil Tree

The shrubbySucculent has bright red, pink, orange or yellow stems. It adds suspense to the arrangements. It grows well in container gardens, but should not be planted where there is a lot of foot traffic.

Quick Look at Euphorbia tirucalli

  • Full sun
  • Typical water needs for a succulent
  • Plant grows up to 8′ (2.5 m) tall
    Plant grows up to 5′ (1.5 m) wide
  • Zone 10a (Minimum 30° F | -1.1° C)
  • Not cold hardy
  • Propagation by cuttings
  • Toxic to humans and animals
  • Winter Dormant

General Care for Euphorbia tirucalli ‘Sticks on Fire’

It is a great addition to your outdoor garden, however great care should be taken when dealing with this plant. There is more about poisonous plants here.

This plant is deer and rabbit resistant.


The watering needs for a Succulent are typical. The “soak and dry” method will allow the soil to dry out completely between watering.

Where to Plant

It is perfect for container gardens. It grows quickly, so it may need to be repot more often. During winter, it will display the most color.

You can plant in an area of your garden that gets 4 to 6 hours of bright sunlight a day.

How to Propagate Euphorbia tirucalli ‘Sticks on Fire’

Stems are the best place to grow Euphorbia tirucalli. ‘Sticks on Fire’ is toxic. Take precautions when handling this plant.


There is a fire called Sticks on Fire. ‘Sticks on Fire’ is toxic. Take precautions when handling this plant.

To remove a stem for propagation, wear nitrile dipped gloves and use a sharp knife to cut a stem near the base of the plant.

Allow the end of the stem to be calloused for a few days before placing it in well-draining soil.


  1. Euphorbia tirucalli (Firesticks, Red Pencil Tree) – Wikipedia

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