Cascabela Species, Lucky Nut, Milk Tree, Yellow Oleander

Cascabela thevetia

Family: Apocynaceae (a-pos-ih-NAY-see-ee) (Info)
Genus: Cascabela (kas-kuh-BEL-uh) (Info)
Species: thevetia (thev-VET-ee-uh) (Info)
Synonym:Cascabela peruviana
Synonym:Thevetia linearis
Synonym:Thevetia peruviana
Synonym:Thevetia thevetia


Tropicals and Tender Perennials

Water Requirements:

Average Water Needs; Water regularly; do not overwater

Sun Exposure:

Full Sun


Grown for foliage


Foliage Color:

Unknown - Tell us


10-12 ft. (3-3.6 m)


6-8 ft. (1.8-2.4 m)


USDA Zone 9a: to -6.6 C (20 F)

USDA Zone 9b: to -3.8 C (25 F)

USDA Zone 10a: to -1.1 C (30 F)

USDA Zone 10b: to 1.7 C (35 F)

USDA Zone 11: above 4.5 C (40 F)

Where to Grow:

Grow outdoors year-round in hardiness zone


All parts of plant are poisonous if ingested

Bloom Color:


Bright Yellow


Bloom Characteristics:

This plant is attractive to bees, butterflies and/or birds

Bloom Size:

Unknown - Tell us

Bloom Time:

Blooms all year

Blooms repeatedly

Other details:

Unknown - Tell us

Soil pH requirements:

6.6 to 7.5 (neutral)

7.6 to 7.8 (mildly alkaline)

Patent Information:


Propagation Methods:

From woody stem cuttings

From seed; sow indoors before last frost

Seed Collecting:

Wear gloves to protect hands when handling seeds


This plant is said to grow outdoors in the following regions:

Glendale, Arizona

Goodyear, Arizona

Mesa, Arizona

Phoenix, Arizona(3 reports)

Scottsdale, Arizona

Sun City, Arizona

Surprise, Arizona(3 reports)

Tempe, Arizona

Tucson, Arizona


La Mesa, California

Laguna Hills, California

Palm Springs, California

Spring Valley, California

Upland, California

Bartow, Florida

Largo, Florida

Lutz, Florida

Melbourne Beach, Florida

Merritt Island, Florida

Miramar Beach, Florida

Naples, Florida(2 reports)

Odessa, Florida

Palm Bay, Florida

Palm Coast, Florida(2 reports)

Rockledge, Florida

Vero Beach, Florida(2 reports)

Lake Charles, Louisiana

New Iberia, Louisiana

San Juan, Puerto Rico

Baytown, Texas

Corpus Christi, Texas

Devers, Texas

Friendswood, Texas

Harlingen, Texas

La Vernia, Texas

Mont Belvieu, Texas

Portland, Texas

Richmond, Texas

Rockport, Texas

Texas City, Texas

Zapata, Texas

Christiansted, Virgin Islands

show all

Gardeners' Notes:


On Aug 14, 2018, Fox_uncle from Qingdao,
China wrote:

The first time I saw a lucky nut tree was in southern China and wanted so much to take some seeds home that I scoured around the tree looking for anything that might be seeds. I ended up with some old pieces of fruit that I dug into with my bare hands. I didnt know it was toxic but fortunately, I never felt ill. I suppose I planted one of those seeds in some good soil after i returned home as it started to grow pretty well in my window with partial sun and a bit of water almost daily. Then one day, the leaves started to fall off and I brought it inside. Because winters are long and cold here, i suppose it got too cold one night and so it died despite my efforts to revive it. Ill be more careful in the future thanks to this website. I ordered more seeds last year online and planted th... read more


On Feb 22, 2016, vossner from East Texas,
United States (Zone 8a) wrote:

Mine was not surviving our 9a winters but after two exceptionally mild winters I now have a 6 ft tree. My thevetia produces orange flowers


On Aug 28, 2015, d517 from Surprise, AZ wrote:

I have this tree in my front yard, and it's really very beautiful. I will admit it is messy, and creates a lot of debris. It is also toxic, so I'm careful. But I love how it looks, and since it's a slow grower, not much pruning needed ever. I would love to try to propagate it. I live in Surprise, and it's faces the south, and is doing very well.


On Feb 26, 2013, oirad from New Iberia, LA wrote:

these are wonderful plants, I have one planted in my yard and 40-50 of them for sale in 3 gallon pots


On Aug 10, 2011, eliasastro from Athens,
Greece (Zone 10a) wrote:

A beautiful small tree with tropical appearance, but one of the most poisonous. The juice (milk) is fatal in just few hours if injested, as it is highly cardiotoxic. There was a fatal incident in Cyprus before some years, as a woman had the very bad idea to bite the fruit. After few hours she died, despite the fact that she didn't eat much, as the taste was awful. Few drops of the juice were enough to kill her.
Contact of the juice with the skin must also be avoided, as it can be dangerous too.


On Apr 9, 2011, CostaRica from Guayabo de Bagaces, Guanacaste,
Costa Rica (Zone 10b) wrote:

I have the both the yellow and the white flowered species which is very pretty.


On Jul 14, 2010, ogrejelly from Gilbert, AZ (Zone 9b) wrote:

My least favorite plant in my yard because it produces endless litter of leaves and flowers. The day after I blow out my yard this tree has already covered the ground with debris.

It is very hearty and requires no water here in the Phoenix area which is rather amazing. It can be cut down the the ground and it will come right back.

Good for masking an area or for privacy as it is thick but I would only recommend it if you were never going to pick up the debris or care if it is there.


On Nov 24, 2008, Noturf from Marquesas Islands,
Polynesia (French) wrote:

This is an impressive tree, nice architecture, however it drops lots of seeds, flowers, leaves. I would not recommend it to be
planted in urban contexts. Particularly if surrounded by pavement, side walks and so on. Besides that, is a wonderful
tree not over used in Puerto Rico.


On Oct 29, 2003, EGlaze wrote:

I have just recently started cuttings from this plant. I do have a positive feeling that they will take . I am also waiting on seeds to dry enough to plant. I will comment on them when they are further along.


On Oct 23, 2003, CDauphinet from New Iberia, LA (Zone 8b) wrote:

Beautiful colors!


On Oct 22, 2003, lbrekke from Friendswood, TX wrote:

I planted three, two-foot plants in spring 2002 and they are now about eight feet tall.


On Nov 23, 2002, jelybu from Corpus Christi, TX (Zone 10) wrote:

Our Mexican Oleanders have continuously bloomed peachy-apricot flowers since we planted them this spring. They have already grown to 4-6' high, & have well developed canopies. Two-inch, lantern-shaped seed pods fall off the tree while green then turn black. I wear gloves to clean up beneath the trees, as the pods are supposed to be the most poisonous part of plant.

The foliage is a striking yellowy-green. The plant seems to love our HOT, very windy, weather, & poor to moderate soil. Doesn't spread like regular Oleanders and can be easily shaped with pruning. Insects, fungus, and salty air don't bother them either. I've heard propagation is usually by cuttings, but I'm going to try seed also.


On Oct 22, 2001, Floridian from Lutz, FL (Zone 9b) wrote:

An attractive small (about 12 feet) tree or shrub with yellow, bell-shaped flowers mostly in summer and fall, but on and off year-round. It may be grown as a shrub. A good accent plant for small areas but it is poisonous like the oleander it resembles, so it is not suitable for homes with small children.