Additional Common Names:
Castor Oil Plant, Mole Bean Plant, African Wonder Tree, Castor Bean
Native to the tropics, but grown in North America as an onamental plant or as a crop for castor oil.
Beans are very toxic: oral irritation, burning of mouth and throat, increase in thirst, vomiting, diarrhea, kidney failure, convulsions. Access to ornamental plants or pruned foliage most common in poisonings. Ricin is a highly toxic component that inhibits protein synthesis; ingestion of as little as one ounce of seeds can be lethal. Signs typically develop 12 to 48 hours after ingestion, and include loss of appetite, excessive thirst, weakness, colic, trembling, sweating, loss of coordination, difficulty breathing, progressive central nervous system depression, and fever. As syndrome progresses, bloody diarrhea may occur, and convulsions and coma can precede death.
Toxic to Dogs
Toxic to Cats
Toxic to Horses