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COMMON POISONOUS PLANTS

TULSA AREA SAFETY COUNCIL
Wright Building Annex Room 208
125 West Third Street
Tulsa, Oklahoma 74103
(Taken from "Family Safety" Magazine, National Safety Council)
OKLAHOMA POISON CONTROL CENTER
(1+800+222-1222)

Common Poisonous Plants

Table of Contents


House Plants

PLANT TOXIC PART SYMPTOMS
Hyacinth,
Narcissus,
Daffodil
Bulb Nausea, vomiting, diarrhea. May be fatal.
Oleander Leaves,
branches
Extremely poisonous, Affects the heart, produces severe digestive upset and has caused death.
Dieffenbachia
(Dumb Cane)
Elephant ear
All parts Intense burning and irritation of the mouth and tongue. Death can occur if base of the tongue swells enough to block the air passage of the throat.
Rosary pea,
Castor bean
Seeds Fatal. A single rosary pea seed has caused death. One or two castor bean seeds are near the lethal dose for adults.
Mistletoe Berries Fatal. Both children and adults have died from eating the berries.


Flower Garden Plants

PLANT TOXIC PART SYMPTOMS
Larkspur Young plant,
Seeds
Digestive upset, nervous excitement, depression. May be fatal.
Monkshood Fleshy roots Digestive upset and nervous excitement.
Autumn crocus,
Star-of-Bethlehem
Bulbs Vomiting and nervous excitement.
Lily-of-the-valley Leaves, flowers Irregular heart beat and pulse, usually accompanied by digestive upset and mental confusion.
Iris Underground
stems
Severe, but not usually serious, digestive upset.
Foxglove Leaves One of the sources of the drug digitalis, used to stimulate the heart. In large amounts, the active principles cause dangerously irregular heartbeat and pulse, usually digestive upset and mental confusion. May be fatal.
Bleeding heart
(Dutchman's
breeches)
Foliage, Roots May be poisonous in large amounts. Has proved fatal to cattle.


Vegetable Garden Plants

PLANT TOXIC PART SYMPTOMS
Rhubarb Leaf blade Fatal. Large amounts of raw or cooked leaves can cause convulsions, coma, followed rapidly by death.


Ornamental Plants

PLANT TOXIC PART SYMPTOMS
Daphne Berries Fatal. A few berries can kill a child.
Wisteria Seeds, Pods Mild to severe digestive upset. Many children are poisoned by this plant.
Golden Chain Bean-like
capsules in
which the
seeds are
suspended
Severe poisoning. Excitement, staggering, convulsions and coma. May be fatal.
Laurels,
Rhododendron,
Azalea
All parts Fatal. Produces nausea and vomiting, depression, difficult breathing, prostration and coma.
Jessamine Berries Fatal. Digestive disturbance and nervous symptoms.
Lantana camara
(red sage)
Green berries Fatal. Affects lungs, kidneys, heart and nervous system. Grows in the southern U.S. and in moderate climates.
Yew Berries, foliage Fatal. Foliage more toxic than berries. Death is usually sudden without warning symptoms.


Trees

PLANT TOXIC PART SYMPTOMS
Wild and
cultivated
cherries
Twigs, foliage Fatal. Contains a compound that releases cyanide when eaten. Gasping, excitement, and prostration are common symptoms that often appear within minutes.
Oaks Foliage, Acorns Affects kidneys gradually. Symptoms appear only after several days or weeks. Takes a large amount for poisoning. Children should not be allowed to chew on acorns.
Elderberry Shoots, leaves
bark
Children have been poisoned by using pieces of the pithy stems for blowguns. Nausea and digestive upset.
Black locust Bark, sprouts,
foliage
Children have suffered nausea, weakness and depression after chewing the bark and seeds.


Plants in Wooded Areas

PLANT TOXIC PART SYMPTOMS
Jack-in-the-pulpit All parts
especially roots
Like dumb cane contains small needle-like crystals of calcium oxalate that cause intense irritation and burning of the mouth and tongue.
Moonseed Berries Blue, purple color, resembling wild grapes. Contains a single seed. (True wild grapes contain several small seeds.)
Mayapple Apple, foliage,
roots
Contains at least 16 active toxic principles, primarily in the roots. Children often eat the apple with no ill effects, but several apples may cause diarrhea.


Plants in Swamp or Moist Areas

PLANT TOXIC PART SYMPTOMS
Water hemlock All parts Fatal. Violent and painful convulsions. A number of people have died from hemlock.


Plants in Fields

PLANT TOXIC PART SYMPTOMS
Buttercups All parts Irritating juices may severely injure the digestive system.
Nightshade All parts,
especially the
unripe berry
Fatal. Intense digestive disturbances and nervous symptoms.
Poison hemlock All parts Fatal. Resembles a large wild carrot. Used in ancient Greece to kill condemned prisoners.
Jimson weed
(thorn apple)
All parts Abnormal thirst, distorted sight, delirium, incoherence and coma. Common cause of poisoning. Has proved fatal.

Need more help?

Walk-ins are welcome at the Master Gardeners office at the O.S.U Extension Center,
4116 E. 15th Street (Fairground Gate #6).
You can reach us by phone at (918) 746-3701.
Our hours are from 9:00 Am. to 4:00 p.m. Monday through Friday except County holidays.

Table of CONTENTS