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Castor Bean

Ricinus communis


Tall shrub but they can grow as big as a small tree. Leaves are palmate and are usually composed of 8-9 lobes, green with some hues of blue and a reddish center, petioles are red. It produces a cluster of fruits that are round covered with spikes but not hard and a bluish sheen to it. Flowers are red. All in all, it would look good in an ornamental garden, it has several cultivars and some are more red than others, this one I guess is more of the wild kind.


Found this plants growing on empty plots of land in a subdivision, habitat is like a shrubland, grassy areas. It is native to the Mediterranean, Eastern Africa and India, I just learned that they are invasive in the Philippines.


I was riding my bike looking at plants and insects when I passed by this plant and I noticed the fruit. It kind of reminded me of the castor bean which I saw on Guinness Book of World Records as the Most poisonous bean/plant/seed or something and just 70 micrograms of it can kill a full grown human. I wasn't expecting it to be "The" Castor bean and I just thought it was a similar looking plant or at least belong on the same family or genus as the Castor bean, but as I was researching, it really is "The" Castor Bean and they've invaded the Philippines. Also, I remember castor oil was popular because of its hair growth properties and we had a bottle of it, but of course the oil would not be poisonous as during processing, the poisonous compound is broken down.

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Francis Floe
Spotted by
Francis Floe

Iloilo City, Western Visayas, Philippines

Spotted on Dec 5, 2021
Submitted on Jul 28, 2023

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