Castor Bean | Bigger | Update 5

Good News: Lots of frost in the open areas. Castor is close to the house and was not damaged.


We are nearing the dates of our first killing frost and hard freeze in Iowa. Here is the latest forecast this afternoon. We live one mile north of interstate 80. Bad news for Castor.

…COLD NIGHT WITH FREEZE AND FROST EXPECTED…

.A LARGE CANADIAN HIGH PRESSURE WILL CONTINUE TO BUILD DOWN ACROSS
THE UPPER MIDWEST TONIGHT. THIS SYSTEM WILL BRING CLEARING SKIES…
LIGHT WINDS AND COLD CONDITIONS TO THE AREA BY EARLY SATURDAY
MORNING. THIS WILL LEAD TO FREEZING TEMPERATURES GENERALLY NORTH OF
INTERSTATE 80.

The plant does not appear to care. It is bigger and stronger than ever. The last update 4 was September 14. Since then, we went to Oklahoma, New Mexico, back to Oklahoma, and now home. It continues to amaze.

After our walk yesterday, I took this picture from the same vantage point as most of the previous ones.

Castor19

It didn’t give a good sense of perspective and size. So, I asked Melanie to take another. Can you can spot me in the photo. I am 5 ft 10 in tall in my shoes.

Castor20

A closeup of the seeds shows them still green. The entire bunch is 2 ft tall. I will need a chain saw and tractor to remove the plant before winter.

Castor21

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15 thoughts on “Castor Bean | Bigger | Update 5

  1. OceanDiver

    Holy smokes! Actually, it’s too bad those aren’t smoking leaves, you’d be set up for years 😉 That is one extremely happy plant. I’ll be interested to see how it weathers the frost.

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    1. Jim in IA Post author

      LOL…they might make you sick with mild ricin poisoning. I won’t be testing it, just so you know.

      Morning will show how it fares. It might just make it stronger. ???

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  2. Pat T.

    Oh, my! The “perspective” shot is wonderful, to show just how truly remarkable this plant is!!
    Watching your castor bean plant grow, and watching (contending with!) the tree-of-heaven (Ailanthus altissima) that has been attempting (fairly successfully) to take over my backyard… fills me with wonder and awe!
    It becomes SO easy to imagine a prehistoric world, with huge, (exotic?) incredibly fast-growing plants!!
    Thank you for sharing this with us!
    Pat T.
    in Michigan

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    1. Jim in IA Post author

      I agree about the huge and exotic plants of the past. Along with the dinosaurs, they would have been an awesome thing to see in real life.

      Thanks for following along.

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      Reply
  3. Alex Autin

    WOW! You guys are lucky you didn’t come home to find that Castor had moved in a taken over the house….which it looks to be in the process of! Maybe a freeze will save you…maybe 😉

    But seriously, that monster is impressive, I especially like the seeds. I’d be careful about doing anymore perspective shots….Little Shop of Horrors is coming to mind!

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  4. shoreacres

    All I could do was laugh when I looked at that thing. It truly does look like something straight from the rain forest. I’m not sure if we have anything here that compares in size. That one surely is happy in its spot! I’m glad to see the frost didn’t get it — at least, I think I am.

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