The castor bean
Ricinus communis is one of the oldest plants, getting importance as an agricultural crop for subtropical and tropical countries in the world. Castor is a hardy plant, requires low input, tolerates marginal soils, is easy to establish in the field, is resistant to drought, and gives yield 350–900 kg oil per hectare. Castor beans are widespread throughout tropical regions. In areas with a suitable climate, castor establishes itself easily where it can become an invasive plant and can often be found on wasteland. The plant is more likely to self sow in warm climates. This sun loving species generally needs a growing season of 90 to 150 days. Castor beans show great functional value in energy sector, industry, and pharmaceutical. In recent years, it received increasing demand in the international market for its more than 700 uses, ranging from medicine and cosmetics to biodiesel, plastic, and lubricants.