Ricinus communis 'Carmencita Red'

Ricinus communis ‘Carmencita Red’
(rih-SIGH-nus kom-YEW-nus) Family: Euphoribiaceae
syn. Ricinus communis ‘Carmencita’

Common name: castor bean
Zone: 11 (grown as an annual)
Height: 4.5-5 ft (1.3-1.5 m) Spread: 3 ft (0.9 m)
Aspect: full sun; partial shade
Soil: average; well-draining
Water: regular

Description: A suckering perennial shrub in its native habitat; a single-stem, tropical-liking annual in Canada. The strong mahogany red stalk supports stems of large, palmate, deeply lobed, reddish-purple leaves alternately. Has separate male and female flowers on same plant. Red, spiky seed pods hold a single, mottled, bean-like seed.


Special Notes: Native to India, east Africa and the southeastern Mediterranean Basin. Castor seed is the source of castor oil which has many medicinal and other uses. Propagate by seed.


Caution: All parts of this plant are poisonous, especially the seeds. Do not ingest. Wash hands thoroughly after handling the seeds.


RHS Award of Garden Merit 1993


Posted on August 17, 2012