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Niagara Falls
Friday, December 8, 2023
Jack’s beanstalk has nothing on Walter and Lydia Plett’s version
Walter and Lydia Plett of Niagara-on-the-Lake were surprised to see their Green Castor Bean plant reach a height of 12 feet, about double what the plant normally achieves.

There must have been some magic in those beans that gave rise to a Niagara-on-the-Lake couple’s behemoth of a beanstalk.

There’s no giant, no Jack and no chicken laying golden eggs, but for Walter and Lydia Plett, the heights to which a green castor bean plant has grown in the backyard of their Line 3 Road home is nonetheless impressive to the avid gardeners.

“We’ve had good responses from friends when they come for barbecues. They say (it) looks so beautiful,” Lydia said.

“They all want to know what it is and how did it get to be so big. And we have no answers for them.”

Normally, green castor bean plants grow to about six feet high. The one in the Pletts’ garden has doubled that and is 12 feet tall.

Lydia said the couple were looking for something for their garden that would be “big and showy” and it appears they got just what they asked for.

“We thought it would stop at six feet, like it normally does or maybe a little bit taller than seven feet but it just keeps going and going,” Lydia said.

As well as being 12 feet tall, the stalk itself measures five inches in diameter.

Very little needed to be done to help the young plant they purchased at a Pelham garden centre. It was about a foot tall when they acquired it, Walter said.

“It takes a lot of watering,” he added.

However it was achieved, the Pletts are happy with the results of their work – their giant beanstalk included – to beautify their home.

“We love gardening and we are thrilled when the plants do well,” Lydia said.

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