|Friday Five: Poisonous Plants|
|Written by Heleigh Bostwick Friday, 10 May 2013|
When you choose a plant for your garden youíre probably thinking about color, form, and texture--not whether the plant is a potential health hazard for your pets, or for that matter your children, and in some cases adults. Unfortunately many of our favorite garden flowers are poisonous including yew (pictured above), foxglove, larkspur, bleeding hearts, wisteria, autumn crocus, and jasmine. Plants are tricky sometimes. It may be that leaves or flowers are edible but berries are not. In other words the one part of the plant may be perfectly safe to munch on while another plant part on the same plant is poisonous. If you have pets or kids roaming through your garden gates, here are five things you might want to keep in mind when buying a new plant or planning your garden.
You may know it as myrtle (Vinca minor and itís a popular groundcover in some parts of the country.
Those pretty red berries (botanically referred to as arils) on English and Japanese yew shrubs are extremely poisonous to pets and people. Keep pets away from bark and leaves as well.
3. Castor Bean
The seeds of castor bean plant are highly toxic. Just one or two seeds is close to a lethal dose for an adult.
Another reason to rid our landscapes of this pesky invasive vine is that the leaves are considered moderately toxic causing gastrointestinal symptoms, difficulty breathing, and possibly inducing a coma if enough of them are ingested.
5. Sago Palm
All parts of the sago palm are poisonous, particularly the seeds.
More information on poisonous plants.