Ricinus Communis ‘carmencita’

In areas vulnerable to frost it’s usually shorter, and grown as if it have been an annual. However, it could develop properly outdoor in cooler climates, no less than in southern England, and the leaves do not seem to endure frost injury in sheltered spots, the place it stays evergreen. It was utilized in Edwardian instances within the parks of Toronto, Canada. Although not cultivated there, the plant grows wild in the US, notably Griffith Park in Los Angeles. The shiny leaves are 15–forty five cm (6–18 in) long, long-stalked, alternate and palmate with 5 to twelve deep lobes with coarsely toothed segments.

  • The leaves are used as a poultice to relieve headaches and treat boils.
  • Select from a range of popular bedding plants, including geranium, begonias, lobelia and coleus.
  • The smaller the particle measurement, the more toxic the ricin.
  • Either purified or processed, it still is a element of many cosmetics.

Ricin from the hull of the castor seed has been examined as a chemical warfare agent. Weapons-grade ricin is purified and produced in particles which are so small they can be breathed in. The smaller the particle measurement, the more toxic the ricin.

Weed Info Sheet

The ladies look nearly medieval, like some sort of tiny mace embellished by a fancy red feathered crown. The feathery crown is the fashion, the place the pollen lands to pollinate the flower. The spines are ornamentation, maybe to ward of predators .

Deadhead flowers should you don’t want to collect the seed. At the end of the season, discard plants on the compost heap, or move crops to a covered area underneath glass to grow on as a conservatory shrub. The Egyptians used the oil as a purgative and hair-restorer, and for the therapy of ulcers. The record of illnesses alleviated by the castor oil plant based on the Greek doctor Dioscorides was a lot longer.


The variability has been elevated by breeders who’ve chosen a variety of cultivars for leaf and flower colors, and for oil production. It is a fast-growing, suckering shrub that may attain the dimensions of a small tree, around 12 m , however it is not cold hardy.

castor oil plant

Ricinus communis produces greenish-yellow flowers and spiny spherical seedpods. You can save the seed however they are notoriously poisonous. Bearing this in mind, you may choose to deadhead the fluffy blooms earlier than seeds set. Castor oil is used for more than just medical and cosmetic functions.

Castor seeds have a warty appendage called the caruncle, which is a type of elaiosome. The caruncle promotes the dispersal of the seed by ants . The flowers lack petals and are unisexual the place both varieties are borne on the identical plant in terminal panicle-like inflorescences of green or, in some varieties, shades of red. The frequent name “castor oil” most likely comes from its use as a alternative for castoreum, a perfume base made from the dried perineal glands of the beaver . It has one other common name, palm of Christ, or Palma Christi, that derives from castor oil’s reputed capacity to heal wounds and treatment illnesses.

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