A plant of the tropics, where it is found at elevations up to 2,000 metres. It grows best in areas where annual daytime temperatures are within the range 28 – 34°c, but can tolerate 7 – 47°c.
The plant can survive temperatures down to about -1°c.
It prefers a mean annual rainfall in the range 1,500 – 3,500mm, but tolerates 1,000 – 7.300mm.
There is usually a dry season of 4 – 8 months.