Euphorbia tirucalli 'Sticks fire'

Euphorbia tirucalli ‘Sticks on Fire’

Euphorbia tirucalli ‘Sticks on Fire’ is also known as FIRE STICKS, STICKS OF FIRE, RED CACTUS. The succulent has a shrub-like appearance and produces green stems with pink, orange, yellow or red ends. It is one of the succulent types that create interest wherever they are grown or used in succulent arrangements.

Description of Sticks on Fire

The Euphorbia tirucalli ‘Sticks on Fire’ has smooth cylindrical branches that have the diameter of a pencil hence the name. The color on the tips is usually pink, red, or orange, it becomes redder during winter and fades during summer and becomes more yellow.

The succulent has no spines. It also produces small leaves that are about 0.5 inches long and 0.12 inches wide. The tiny leaves fall off early and the stems are often naked. The succulent also produces tiny pale-yellow flowers that are inconspicuous. The fire stick succulent can grow up to 7.6m high and up to 3m wide in the wild. However, the cultivars available in nurseries grow to much smaller sizes.

The succulent is also referred to as the milk bush because of the milky sap that it produces. It is native to Africa in semi-arid tropical climates. Over the years it has been introduced to different parts of the world and widely used as a landscaping plant.

Care for Euphorbia tirucalli ‘Sticks on Fire’

Euphorbia tirucalli ‘Sticks on Fire’ is a poisonous succulent to animals and humans. The sap produced by the Fire Sticks has toxins that are harmful and cause irritation to the eyes and skin. All the parts of the plant are poisonous including the stems, leaves, and roots.

The plant should be handled with care to avoid getting hurt. The stems break easily and the milky sap can easily get on eyes and skin. However, the succulent is a great addition to your outdoor or as a container plant. Read more on poisonous succulents here.

Rabbits and deer don’t damage the succulent and keep away. The ‘Firesticks Plant’ is also resilient to most diseases and plant pests.

Planting Location

‘Firesticks Plant’ is a perfect addition to any container garden or outdoors. When grown in containers or pots, it may require more frequent repotting compared to other types of succulents because of its fast growth rate.

The succulent thrives in locations where it gets 4-6 hours of sunlight per day. So, whether planted directly in the ground or in containers it’s advisable to make sure the plant receives sunlight.

‘Sticks of Fire’ are not too particular about soil pH and will generally do well in most soils. It is also salt tolerant.

The ‘Sticks of Fire’ requires a spacing of about 240 cm to do well.

Watering Needs

Firesticks Plant has similar watering requirements as most succulent plants. To get the best results it’s best to allow the soil to dry before watering. When watering, soak the plant completely and wait for the soil to dry before watering again. Although you need to water deeply, don’t let the succulent sit in waterlogged soil because it causes root rot. To test the moisture level in the soil you can stick a finger in the soil and check if it’s still moist.

How to propagate Euphorbia tirucalli ‘Sticks of Fire’

Different succulent types have different ways of propagating them so as to get the best results. The best way to propagate Euphorbia tirucalli ‘Sticks on Fire’ is from stem cuttings.

‘Sticks on Fire’ is a toxic succulent as noted above and proper precautions should be taken when propagating it. Use a sharp knife to cut a healthy stem of the succulent right at the base. Also, wear gloves to protect your hands.

‘Sticks on Fire’ propagation is simple. Just allow the cut end to callous over and after several days place it in well-drained soil and it will grow.


Euphorbia tirucalli ‘Sticks on Fire’ is a great low maintenance succulent. Perfect for any outdoor garden and containers. If you liked this post on Euphorbia tirucalli ‘Sticks on Fire’ or found it helpful, please share it and also follow us on Pinterest for more helpful posts.



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One Comment

  1. What kind of soil, potting soil or just the hard cracked soil we have in AZ? Should we add potting soil or something that could aerated the hard packed dirt?

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