The jatropha plant is a bushy hedge that grows seed pods that contain a great amount of oil. The seeds are harvested to make biodiesel, as well as many other products including, cosmetics, paper and soap.
Unlike other plants harvested for biofuels, jatropha flourishes in arid climates and soils. “This means growing jatropha never has to compete with growing food. Also, on a per acre basis, jatropha can yield up to 10 times the amount of oil as other sources of biodiesel. It is also a perennial, lasting up to 50 years without replanting.”
Jatropha has been planted in several countries such as, India, Costa Rica and the U.S. One Florida-based company, My Dream Fuel, was recently featured in Time Magazine for its production of the plant.
Perhaphs the only downside is that little is known about domesticating jatropha.