I love to read these articles and always find them interesting and helpful. As a mother and pet owner whose dogs love to munch on various things in the yard, I've educated myself as to which plants are toxic and to what degree. I remember just starting out gardening and having my puppy pull out and chomp various plants which later I found having various degrees of toxicity. When I saw the Castor Bean in the picture I said to myself that's one I'd never plant. I've admired it in numerous yards in our area but know this is one I could never plant. I think it would be worth mentioning in the articles since I don't think many people would think to check the plant files before planting. Thanks.
It's perfectly safe to grow this plant - if you have dogs who are liable to chew things or young children who might be seduced by the beautiful seedpods then caution is advised. But really, if we didn't grow any plant that was "poisonous" we would have pretty poor gardens. It's the seeds of castor bean that are dangerous. You can grow it and pinch out the flowers..
I have some castor seeds shared with me by a DG member to help against gophers, but after reading about the toxicity have been afraid to actually plant them for fear the dogs would get hold of some part of them. The dogs have not eaten any plants before, but it would be just my luck. We do have oleander planted and when the horses and goats have gotten out they have never tried to eat them. It is as if they know better.
It looks like a great looking plant too and likely better than an annual here.