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Ricinus communis 'Carmencita'
  • RHS AGM

castor oil plant 'Carmencita'

'Carmencita' is a large tender shrub grown as an annual in temperate climates, with large, deep bronze-red, palmately lobed leaves and showy red female flower spikes in summer

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Size
Ultimate height
1.5–2.5 metres
Time to ultimate height
1 year
Ultimate spread
0.5–1 metres
Growing conditions
Chalk
Loam
Sand
Moisture
Moist but well–drained, Well–drained
pH
Acid, Alkaline, Neutral
Colour & scent
StemFlowerFoliageFruit
Spring Bronze Red
Summer Red Bronze Red
Autumn Bronze Red
Winter
Position
  • Full sun
Aspect

West–facing or South–facing

Exposure
Exposed or Sheltered
Hardiness
H2
Botanical details
Family
Euphorbiaceae
Native to the UK
No
Foliage
Deciduous
Habit
Bushy
Potentially harmful
All parts of the plant are highly toxic if ingested, particularly the seeds. Contact with the foliage may aggravate skin allergies. Wear gloves and other protective equipment when handling
Genus

Ricinus is a fast-growing evergreen shrub, often grown as an annual, with large, palmately lobed leaves and dense spikes of small flowers, followed by prickly seed capsules

Name status

Accepted

How to grow

Cultivation

Grow in a loam-based compost in full light. Water freely in growth and apply a balanced liquid fertiliser monthly. Plant outdoors when all danger of frost has passed. Stake plants in exposed positions. Plants grown on poorer soils tend to produce flowers at the expense of foliage

Propagation

Propagate by seed, sowing in late spring. Soak seed for 24 hours and sow singly in pots with bottom heat

Suggested planting locations and garden types
  • City and courtyard gardens
  • Coastal
  • Cottage and informal garden
  • Patio and container plants
  • Flower borders and beds
Pruning

Pruning group 9

Pests

Glasshouse red spider mite may be a problem

Diseases

Generally disease free

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