Cnidoscolus aconitifolius, commonly known as Chaya or Tree Spinach, is a large, fast growing leafy perennial shrub that is believed to have originated in the Yucatan Peninsula of Mexico. The specific epithet, 'aconitifolius', means Aconitum-like leaves. It has succulent stems which exude a milky sap when cut. It can grow to be 6 meters tall, but is usually pruned to about 2 m for easier leaf harvest. It is a popular leaf vegetable in Mexican and Central American cuisines, similar to spinach. The leaves must be cooked before being eaten, as the raw leaves are toxic.