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Poisonous Garden Plants Lists

The following list are of plants which are known to be poisonous or irritant or otherwise harmful. The list is not exhaustive, or complete.

As with many things, common sense should prevail. It is well nigh impossible to remove everything which is harmless in life. Cars and all forms of transport can also be dangerous. We learn to recognise the danger, and then respect it.

This list is by no means exhaustive, and I suspect that there are many plants out there which are more dangerous. But of course - other than the scientific studies - we only get to know about them in the VERY RARE occasion that a problem occurs.

If there is ever a time when you think  that someone has fallen prey to plant toxicity, then try to identify the plant responsible - but not to delay the visit to a doctor.

There is no sensationalism in naming these plants - though the odd email suggests that is what we are about. Education and awareness are the determining factors. Far better for us to name and identify plants which have scientific study done upon their toxicity, rather than omitting a plant name because of rarity of incident!

1 - Considered to be the most dangerous - some lethal if eaten!

  • Aconitum - Monkshood
  • Arum - Cuckoo pint.
  • Colchicum - The autumn crocus - Can be fatal if eaten
  • Convallaria - Lily of the Valley
  • Cytisus - the Broom - All parts can be fatal if eaten.
  • Daphne - Shrub grown for its beautifully scented flowers - Can be Fatal
  • Delphinium - All parts Highly toxic - can be fatal if eaten
  • Digitalis - Foxgloves are everywhere and can be lethal.
  • Gloriosa superba - The beautiful Gloriosa Lily!
  • Laburnum - Beautiful golden rain flowers; Can be Fatal if eaten
  • Lantana - Now very popular in the summer border or planted tub!
  • Nerium - A beautiful conservatory plant
  • Phytolacca - The poke weed
  • Ricinus communis - Castor Oil Plant. Not to be confused with Fatsia.
  • Taxus - A hedge favourite.
  • Veratrum - The false Hellebore.

 
 Lantana (Other colours available)

Caster Oil Plant - Ricinus Digitalis - The Foxglove
Ricinus (Castor Oil Plant)                    Digitalis (Foxglove)

Laburnum vossii - Golden Rain Tree Daphne mezerium Rubrum
Laburnum (Golden Rain)        Daphne mezereum Rubrum

Canvalleria - Lily of the Valley 
Convallaria (Lily of the Valley)

The following are also considered to be either poisonous or skin irritants.

The severity of the problems caused by skin irritant plants should not be underestimated. Once a reaction has occurred, it can cause severe skin problems for years if not life.

Some of those listed below are poisonous - some are skin allergens. There are more that we will be adding to the list as time goes by.

  • Aesculus - Horse Chestnut
  • Alstroemeria - The Peruvian Lily
  • Aquilegia - Garden Columbine - Ladies Bonnet
  • Caltha - The Marsh Marigold
  • Chrysanthemum - now known as Dendranthema  - Severe skin irritation
  • Cupressocyparis  Leylandii
  • Datura - Angels Tears
  • Dicentra spectabilis - Bleeding Heart
  • Dictamnus alba
  • Euonymus
  • Euphorbia - the Spurge
  • Fremontodendron - Californian Poppy
  • Gaultheria - Popular ground cover plant
  • Gloriosa Lily
  • Hedera helix - common ivy - or its variegated forms
  • Helleborus - The Christmas or Lenten Rose
  • Hyacinthus - Potted or garden
  • Hypericum
  • Ipomoea - The Morning Glory (Seeds)
  • Iris
  • Juniperus sabina - Low growing Juniper (Seeds or foliage)
  • Kalmia - Calico Bush
  • Ligustrum - Privet hedges etc
  • Lobelia - the perennial types
  • Lupinus - Lupins
  • Narcissus - Daffodils etc
  • Nerium - The Oleander. Foliage is poisonous, can be fatal if eaten or chewed.
  • Phytolacca - The Poke Weed or Poke Root
  • Polygonatum - Solomon's Seal
  • Primula obconica - a treacherous house plant. Yet I have handled thousands of these - as a grower. other gardeners have perhaps had a day or so handling them, and then become alergic - seemingly by just being in the presence of them!
  • Rhamnus - The Sea Buckthorn
  • Rheum - Looks like Rhubarb
  • Ruta graveolens - sold as a herb - even now without warning!
  • Scilla - beautiful bulbous plant with blue flowers
  • Solanum tuberosum - The POTATO green parts.
  • Symphytum - Comfrey has many toxic properties - A herb indeed!
  • Thuja occidentalis - Often sold as a hedging conifer
  • Tulip - The tulip bulbs can be severe skin allergen
  • Wisteria.
  • Comfrey - Sometimes white or blue flowered - Toxic!

By David Hughes - info@gardenseeker.com