Ricinus communis L. (Euphorbiaceae) commonly known as castor, is an evergreen, fast growing glabrous shrub or small tree. It is found invasive or as weed in many countries andnative to North-Eastern Africa (Somalia and Ethiopia). It is commonly called castor bean or castor oil plant. It is usually 1-5 m tall. The roots are strong (Tap-root) and has prominent lateral roots. The stem is green, comprising nodes, petioles and inflorescences axes. The leaves are dark green, spirally arranged on branches, palmate in shape with acuminate serrate lobes. Each leaf varies in size ranges between 3.5-50 cm long and 10-70 cm wide. The panicles are terminal, erect, up to 40 cm long and glaucous. The flowers borne within 6 months of germination and are unisexual. The male flowers are present towards the base while female flowers are present towards the top. The flowers are short, pedicelled and 1-1.5 cm in diameter. The corolla is absent and 3-5 calyx lobes are present which are acute in shape. The male flowers consists of many bundles of stamens while female flowers consists of 1-ovuled cell superior ovary and 3 styles. The fruit is 15-25 mm long, spiny, greenish to reddish brown in colour, ellipsoid to sub-globose in shape. Each fruit comprises numerous seeds.
All of our seeds are collected from wild plants from Paphos District!
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