Striking Castor Bean Garden Plants

Striking Castor Bean Garden Plants

Castor bean garden plants, which are not beans at all, are commonly grown in the garden for their striking foliage as well as shade cover. Castor bean garden plants grows fast, reaching 6 to 10 feet tall in a few months. In U.S. Department of Agriculture plant hardiness zones 9 through 11, it grows as a perennial, but with the fast growth rate it works well as an annual in frost-prone areas. As far back as 4,000 B.C., castor bean garden plants have been found in ancient Egyptian tombs. The valuable oil from this tropical beauty was used thousands of years ago to light lamp wicks. Castor bean plantation businesses still exist today, though mainly in tropical regions. Many varieties of ornamental castor beans are available and make a bold statement in any garden. In tropical regions, it grows as an evergreen shrub or tree that can reach 40 feet in height. In warm areas, this striking plant is grown as an annual. This plant can grow from seedling to a 10-foot tall plant by the end of the summer but will die back with the first frost. In USDA planting zone 9 and above, castor bean plants grow as perennials that look like small trees.

Growing castor bean garden plants is extremely easy. Castor bean seeds start readily indoors and will grow very rapidly. Castor plants like full sun and humid conditions. Provide loamy, moist, but not soaking wet, soil for best results. Soak seeds overnight to aid with germination. In warmer areas, or once the soil can be worked and the threat of frost has passed, castor bean seeds can be sown directly into the garden.

Outdoor Garden With Castor Bean Plants

Outdoor Garden With Castor Bean Plants

While the castor bean (Ricinus communis) is known for its extremely poisonous beans and invasive nature, it also grows into an ornamental 8- to 15-foot tall, tropical shrub in only three to four months.

Backyard Garden With Castor Bean Plants

Backyard Garden With Castor Bean Plants

Castor bean plants grow as perennials in frost-free areas, and as annuals where winters include freezes.

Outdoor Castor Bean In The Garden

Outdoor Castor Bean In The Garden

With their large, attention-grabbing leaves and bright red flowers, castor bean plants (Ricinus communis) make a striking addition to sun-filled gardens.

Tall Castor Bean In The Garden

Tall Castor Bean In The Garden

The castor bean plant features spiky, red and green fruit growing among green, tropical leaves.

Outdoor Backyard With Castor Bean Plants

Outdoor Backyard With Castor Bean Plants

To support their rapid growth, castor bean plants need abundant water early in the spring and summer.

Castor Bean Plants In The Yards

Castor Bean Plants In The Yards

The castor bean plant needs full sun and loamy soil with fast drainage.

Backyard Castor Bean Plants

Backyard Castor Bean Plants

The castor bean plant (Ricinus communes) walks a fine line between landscape-acceptable ornamental and highly toxic weed

Garden With Flowering And Castor Bean Plants

Garden With Flowering And Castor Bean Plants

Castor bean plants (Ricinus ommunis) are native to the Ethiopian region of Africa but have been naturalized in warm climates all over the world.

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