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Q. Who is Mr. Smarty Plants?

A: There are those who suspect Wildflower Center volunteers are the culpable and capable culprits. Yet, others think staff members play some, albeit small, role. You can torture us with your plant questions, but we will never reveal the Green Guru's secret identity.

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Ask Mr. Smarty Plants is a free service provided by the staff and volunteers at the Lady Bird Johnson Wildflower Center.

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Please forgive us, but Mr. Smarty Plants has been overwhelmed by a flood of mail and must take a break for awhile to catch up. We hope to be accepting new questions again soon. Thank you!

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Saturday - March 04, 2006

From: TWO RIVERS, WI
Region: Midwest
Topic: Non-Natives
Title: Locating toxic, non-native, invasive Castor Bean seeds
Answered by: Nan Hampton

QUESTION:

Where do I find castor bean seeds? Thank you.

ANSWER:

Castor bean (Ricinus communis) is a plant native to Africa that was introduced to North America, but now occurs widely over the eastern and southern U. S. A Google search using "castor bean seed" resulted in many sources that have seeds available.

This plant is on the invasive plant lists in Florida and California. Additionally, please be aware that castor bean seeds are highly toxic. Therefore, if you do purchase seeds, please plant them responsibly and grow the plant in a container away from contact with small children and pets.
 

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