Castor bean indoors?

token28001(zone7b NC)January 27, 2009

I've read that castor bean plants can be grown indoors. Has anyone tried this? Any idea how large they will get? I assume they need lots of light.

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I have grown them in my greenhouse, and they did OK for a while, but then they crapped out, maybe it got too hot in there (or it could have been the lack of sufficient water and fertilizer they recieved when i got too busy to care for them, oops!) Anyway, they only got about 2' tall, but like i said, I got busy in the summer and never got them planted outside and they got a little neglected. I would give it a shot in the sunniest window you have, its worth a try!

Good Luck!

    Bookmark   January 29, 2009 at 7:00AM
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By the way, let me know if it works out for you, and remember that Castor Beans are very very VERY Toxic, if you have small children these plants should be avoided, especially indoors!!!


    Bookmark   January 29, 2009 at 7:02AM
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token28001(zone7b NC)

No kids and a cat that only eats dry cat food. She won't touch tuna or cat nip/cat grass. Finicky thing.

I started the seeds yesterday. We'll see how they germinate and grow.

    Bookmark   January 29, 2009 at 11:54AM
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rhizo_1 (North AL) zone 7

I doubt that you will be able to find sufficient light for your plants without supplemental sources. And remember that there is no accounting for which plants a cat will find interesting. Although my cat has behaviors much like yours, I would never try to grow this plant inside.

    Bookmark   January 29, 2009 at 12:06PM
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albert_135(Sunset 2 or 3)

The toxin is in the beans and the beans must be masticated to cause harm. Your cat is unlikely to chew beans.

Here is a link that might be useful:

    Bookmark   January 29, 2009 at 2:05PM
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rhizo_1 (North AL) zone 7

That is not correct information, Albert. All parts of this plant is toxic. However, it is the beans from which the deadly poison Ricin is made. The chemicals found in the beans are also found throughout the entire plant, though in lesser amounts.

    Bookmark   January 31, 2009 at 2:45PM
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albert_135(Sunset 2 or 3)

rhizo_1 is correct. Please ignore Albert's post(s).

    Bookmark   February 1, 2009 at 12:31PM
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shapiro(5a Ontario)

The info I've been given in past is that it is good to START the castor bean plants inside - usually on a tall shelf so kids/pets can't get at them and then, when the plants are about a foot tall (and the temp. outside is warm) that's the time to put them out. I love the deep burgundy leaved ones and in my yard, they have grown huge, with leaves maybe 18 inches across. A good companion plant is the Mexican sun flower with its lovely deep orange-yellow blooms. Look great together!

    Bookmark   February 7, 2009 at 5:47PM
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