I created taxonomy terms and assigned it to a content type 'Article' using term reference field. I created nodes by programmatically but how to set taxonomy terms for the nodes?

The taxonomy terms are created already. I want to set the taxonomy term for a node programmatically.

4 Answers 4


Use this function to get ID from Termname

function _get_tid_from_term_name($term_name) {
  $vocabulary = 'tags';
  $arr_terms = taxonomy_get_term_by_name($term_name, $vocabulary);
  if (!empty($arr_terms)) {
    $arr_terms = array_values($arr_terms);
    $tid = $arr_terms[0]->tid;
   else {
    $vobj = taxonomy_vocabulary_machine_name_load($vocabulary);
    $term = new stdClass();
    $term->name = $term_name;
    $term->vid = $vobj->vid;
    $tid = $term->tid;
  return $tid;
  • I like its versatility (the else part of it), so it adds the term. Commented Dec 31, 2016 at 22:25

When you creating a node programmatically, you can assign it to any term like this:

$node = new stdClass();
$node->type = 'YOUR_CONTENT_TYPE_NAME';
$node->title = 'title';

$node->language = LANGUAGE_NONE;

//id of your taxonomy term
$tid = 1;

//add term to a node field
//field_yourfield_name - machine name of your term reference field

$node->field_yourfield_name[$node->language][0]['tid'] = $tid;
  • 1
    @neok.Thanks.It works well using term id.But to how to set termnames? is that like $node->field_yourfield_name[$node->language][0]['name'] = $termname;
    – Ranjani
    Commented Jun 15, 2013 at 10:51
  • 2
    Anyone know how to tag node(programatically) using taxonomy termname instead of taxonomy id in drupal 7?
    – Ranjani
    Commented Jun 17, 2013 at 14:32
  • @pretty Use taxonomy_get_term_by_name to get the term object and then use the tid. Commented Oct 27, 2014 at 10:14

You can use some entity metadata wrappers to achieve that, e.g.:

try {
  $w_node = entity_metadata_wrapper('node', $entity);
  $w_some_term = entity_metadata_wrapper('taxonomy_term', 1234);
  $w_node->field_term_ref = $w_some_term->tid->value();
} catch (Exception $e) {
  drupal_set_message(t('Error for node: @title, message: @error.',
        array('@title' => $w_node->title->value(), '@error' => $e->getMessage())), 'error');
  watchdog_exception('foo', $e);
  • 1
    +1 for using EMWs. They also have a handy method getIdentifier(), which is one less step than $w_some_term->tid->value(). Here's a great article that helped me understand this concept so much better, and to which I refer regularly when using EMWs:
    – scotself
    Commented Jul 6, 2016 at 0:52

When adding terms, I found I needed to add $term->parent = array(0) otherwise the taxonomy_term_hierarchy table isn't updated properly, and the terms don't show in the admin list page for that vocabulary

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