4424.000 Ricinus L.

Description of the genus

Monoecious, glabrous, annual or perennial, herb, shrub or even small tree. Stipules united to form a caducous sheath. Leaves alternate; petiole with glands at base and apex; lamina peltate, palmately-lobed, the lobes glandular-serrate. Inflorescences paniculate; male flowers in lower half, female in upper. Male flowers: pedicels jointed, with 2 bracteoles; calyx with 3-5 valvate lobes; petals and disk 0; stamens numerous; pistillode 0. Female flowers: pedicels elongating in fruit; sepals 5; petals and disk as for male; ovary 3-locular; ovules 1 per loculus; styles 3, dark red. Fruit 3-lobed, smooth or echinate with accrescent spines, dehiscing into three 2-valved cocci leaving a prominent, persistent columella. Seeds smooth, mottled.

Derivation of name: from Latin ricinus meaning bug or tick, referring to the seeds

Worldwide: 1 species in East and Northeast Africa and Middle East, naturalised throughout the tropics

Malawi: 2 cultivated taxa.

Ricinus communis var. communis

Links to cultivated taxa    View: living plant images - herbarium specimen images - all images for this genus

communis L. var. communis Description, Image
communis L. var. megalospermus (Del.) Müll.Arg.

Other sources of information about Ricinus:

Our websites:

Flora of Botswana: Ricinus
Flora of Botswana: cultivated Ricinus
Flora of Caprivi: Ricinus
Flora of Caprivi: cultivated Ricinus
Flora of Malawi: Ricinus
Flora of Mozambique: Ricinus
Flora of Mozambique: cultivated Ricinus
Flora of Zambia: Ricinus
Flora of Zambia: cultivated Ricinus
Flora of Zimbabwe: Ricinus
Flora of Zimbabwe: cultivated Ricinus

External websites:

African Plants: A Photo Guide (Senckenberg): Ricinus
BHL (Biodiversity Heritage Library): Ricinus
EOL (Encyclopedia of Life): Ricinus
GBIF (Global Biodiversity Information Facility): Ricinus
Google: Web - Images - Scholar
iNaturalist: Ricinus
IPNI (International Plant Names Index): Ricinus
JSTOR Plant Science: Ricinus
Mansfeld World Database of Agricultural and Horticultural Crops: Ricinus
Plants of the World Online: Ricinus
Tropicos: Ricinus
Wikipedia: Ricinus

Copyright: Mark Hyde, Bart Wursten, Petra Ballings and Meg Coates Palgrave, 2014-23

Hyde, M.A., Wursten, B.T., Ballings, P. & Coates Palgrave, M. (2023). Flora of Malawi: Cultivated plants: genus page: Ricinus.
https://www.malawiflora.com/cult/genus.php?genus_id=862, retrieved 25 September 2023

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