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Twelve Poisonous House Plants and Their Health Effects

Updated on July 5, 2016
AliciaC profile image

Linda Crampton is a science teacher with an honors degree in biology. She loves to study nature and write about animals and plants.

Oleander grows indoors or outdoors. It's a beautiful plant but is very toxic.
Oleander grows indoors or outdoors. It's a beautiful plant but is very toxic. | Source

Benefits of Indoor Plants

Indoor plants are a wonderful addition to a home and have many benefits. They are lovely to see and often improve the appearance of the home. Plants such as herbs are edible and may be medicinal as well. Some plants absorb air pollutants and help to purify indoor air. Learning how to take care of house plants teaches children responsibility and may arouse their interest in gardening, which can be a lifelong joy. Having plants in a home is also a great way to connect with nature.

Although it's enjoyable to grow plants indoors, it's important that everyone in the family knows about any dangers associated with them. While many house plants are safe, some are poisonous for people and/or pets. This may not be a problem in a home containing only adults or only adults and older children. If young children or pets live in the home, though, it's a good idea to avoid dangerous plants.

It may be tempting to bring a beautiful but mildly toxic plant into a home and keep it out of reach of children or pets. In this is done, it's important to watch out for dropped leaves and dangling vines, tendrils and aerial roots, which can bring the plant into contact with children and animals.

Caladiums grow indoors in pots as well as outdoors in gardens. They are mildly poisonous. The photo shows the Fannie Munson variety of the plant.
Caladiums grow indoors in pots as well as outdoors in gardens. They are mildly poisonous. The photo shows the Fannie Munson variety of the plant. | Source

Effects of Plant Poisons

Any plant that's classified as poisonous needs to be treated with care, even if it's only mildly toxic. The health effects of a plant toxin depend on many factors, including:

  • the nature of the toxin
  • the part of the plant that's eaten
  • how much toxin is in the plant
  • how much of the plant is ingested
  • the length of time that the person is exposed to the toxin
  • the body mass of the person who has eaten the plant
  • the overall health of the person at the time of ingestion
  • the individual sensitivity of the person to the toxin

Leaves and inflorescence of Dieffenbachia bowmannii
Leaves and inflorescence of Dieffenbachia bowmannii | Source

Dieffenbachia or Dumb Cane

Dieffenbachia is a tropical plant that is native to Central and South America. It's popular as a house plant because of its large and attractive leaves. The leaves are green with light yellow or cream blotches arranged in a variety of patterns. The stems are thick and resemble canes.

Dieffenbachia is a relative of the North American skunk cabbages and belongs to the family Araceae. As in a skunk cabbage, Dieffenbachia's small flowers are born on a long, rod-like structure called a spadix, which is partly enclosed by a sheath called a spathe. This type of inflorescence (cluster of flowers) is characteristic of the Araceae.

"Dieffenbachia" is both the genus of the plant and one of its common names. The genus is the first part of the scientific name of an organism and the species is the second part. For example, Dieffenbachia bomannii is the scientific name of a popular house plant. Dieffenbachia is the plant's genus and bowmannii is the species.

Dieffenbachia was given its alternate name of dumb cane because the plant can literally strike someone dumb if they eat it.

Types of Dieffenbachia

Raphides and Symptoms of Dieffenbachia Poisoning

All parts of a Dieffenbachia plant contain needle-shaped crystals of calcium oxalate called raphides. Raphides occur in other plants as well and are thought to protect the plants from attack by herbivores. Researchers believe that Dieffenbachia contains other toxins in addition to calcium oxalate.

Raphides can be very irritating to human lips as well as the mouth, tongue and digestive tract. When the raphides irritate the mouth parts they may cause them to become inflamed and swell. The swelling may temporarily prevent speech (hence the name "dumb cane") or, more seriously, block the airway and interfere with breathing. Raphides in the eye can be especially painful and can damage the cornea, which is the outer layer of the eye.

Raphides are harmful in another way. By wounding the lining of the mouth and digestive tract, they enable other toxins to enter the body through the damaged area. These toxins might otherwise pass through the body and either be unabsorbed or be broken down into less harmful substances in the digestive tract.

Usually, the damage done by Dieffenbachia is unpleasant but not serious. The discomfort in the mouth may be severe and last for days, however. Fatalities have occurred from Dieffenbachia poisoning, but they are very rare.

A Large Dieffenbachia Plant

Dieffenbachia can produce additional symptoms. The skin may develop a rash and an itch after exposure to the plant's sap. It's therefore a good idea to wear gloves when handling the plant. Ingestion of the plant may cause nausea, vomiting and diarrhea.

Treatment of Dieffenbachia Poisoning

According to the NIH (National Institutes of Health), if someone has chewed or eaten Dieffenbachia their mouth should be washed out with a cold, wet cloth. They should also be given milk to drink and a poison control center should be contacted. If someone is unconscious or unable to swallow they must never be given anything by mouth, however. The hands and eyes of the injured person must be washed if these body parts have contacted the poison.

A view of Dieffenbachia bowmannii that shows the cane-like stems
A view of Dieffenbachia bowmannii that shows the cane-like stems | Source

Caladium, Philodendron and Pothos

Like Dieffenbachia, Caladium, Philodendron and Pothos belong to the family Araceae and are generally chosen as house plants for their large and attractive leaves. Also like Dieffenbachia, they contain calcium oxalate and can produce similar symptoms when they're ingested. Treatment for the poisoning is the same as the treatment for Dieffenbachia poisoning.

Types of Caladiums

Caladium

Caladium is both a genus of plants and a common name for the plants in the genus. There are many different varieties of caladiums and many different leaf patterns are available. The arrow-shaped leaves are generally variegated (having more than one color) and contain different pigments, which may be green, yellow, pink, red or brown in color.

Caladiums can be grown in a container indoors or outdoors and also grow well in a garden. The leaves are beautiful and may become very large. A caladium is sometimes called "elephant ear", a name that is applied to other plants as well. Another interesting and beautiful name for the plant is "angel wings".

Although Caladium is toxic due to the presence of calcium oxalate and another unidentified compound, in general a large amount of the plant needs to be eaten before symptoms appear.

Caladium has beautiful, variegated leaves.
Caladium has beautiful, variegated leaves. | Source

Philodendron

There are many different species in the genus Philodendron and many of these are kept as indoor plants. Philodendrons have a wide variety of interesting leaf shapes and color patterns. They can be so different from one another that it's sometimes hard to believe that they belong to the same genus. Many philodendrons are climbers and produce aerial roots, while others don't climb.

The evidence suggests that Philodendron is only mildly poisonous and that most people have to eat a large quantity of the plant before they develop symptoms.

Philodendron Plants

Pothos (Devil's Ivy)

Pothos (genus Epipremnum) is another popular house plant. It's an evergreen vine which trails over the edge of its container. The plant is attractive and doesn't require much attention, which is why it's popular in public areas such as shopping centers and offices.

Pothos comes in various species and varieties, some with solid green leaves and some with variegated leaves. The leaves are usually heart-shaped with pointed tips.

Pothos and some types of philodendrons are often confused with one other. If someone wants to make sure that they are buying a pothos instead of a philodendron, or the other way round, they should visit a plant nursery or garden store which has knowledgeable and experienced staff. Confusing the two plants in a store won't be important with respect to toxicity, however. Like philodendrons, pothos are classified as only mildly poisonous.

Devil's ivy was once classified in the genus Pothos instead of the genus Epipremnum, which accounts for its most popular common name.

Pothos Plants

Peace Lily or Spathe

Like the plants above, the peace lily or spathe (genus Spathiphyllum) belongs to the family Araceae. it isn't a true lily, despite its name.

The leaves of the peace lily are long, narrow and leathery and have a pointed tip. They are dark green in color and have a shiny surface and prominent veins.

The inflorescence has a white or light green spathe and is borne on a stalk that extends above the rest of the plant. The peace lily got its name because the white spathes look like flags of surrender or peace.

Like its relatives above, the peace lily contains calcium oxalate and can produce unpleasant symptoms if it's taken into the mouth or if liquid from the plant contacts the skin. Generally, though, the plant isn't harmful unless it's chewed or eaten in large amounts.

A close-up photo of a spathe or peace lily inflorescence
A close-up photo of a spathe or peace lily inflorescence | Source

Calla Lily

The calla lily (Zantedeschia aethiopica) is native to Southern Africa. Like the peace lily, the calla lily isn't a true lily (family Liliaceae) but is a member of the family Araceae.

The large and beautiful white "petal" of the calla lily is actually a spathe. It surrounds a yellow spadix, which bears the small flowers. The spathe is gracefully curved and has an elegant and unusual shape. Calla lilies with yellow and pink spathes are available.

The calla lily is yet another plant that contains calcium oxalate raphides. It's only mildly poisonous, which is good news for people who would like to bring this beautiful plant into their home. As always, though, the raphides can be irritating and the effect of the toxin depends on the amount that is ingested.

A flower of a calla lily
A flower of a calla lily | Source

Oleander

Oleander, or Nerium oleander, is beautiful but extremely toxic, even in small amounts. It's an evergreen flowering shrub that is grown both outdoors and indoors. The flowers are pink, red, purple or white. The leathery leaves are long and narrow and have a pointed tip. They are arranged in pairs or whorls on the stem.

Known toxins in oleander include oleandrin, oleondroside, neriin and digitoxigenin. The toxins are present in all parts of the plant. Even the flower nectar of Oleander and the honey that bees make from the nectar contain a dangerous amount of poison.

Oleander in a Garden

Oleander Poisoning

The list of symptoms caused by oleander ingestion is a long one and can be broken down into categories, depending on what part of the body the toxins affect.

Gastrointestinal Problems

  • stomach pain
  • nausea
  • vomiting
  • diarrhea

Vision Problems

  • blurred vision
  • the appearance of halos in the visual field

Skin Problems

  • a rash
  • hives

Circulation Problems

  • a slow or irregular heartbeat
  • low blood pressure

Nervous System Problems

  • headache
  • dizziness
  • confusion
  • drowsiness
  • seizures
  • loss of consciousness

Oleander poisoning is a medical emergency. Treatment by a medical professional is essential.

Daffodils are beautiful, but their bulbs are poisonous.
Daffodils are beautiful, but their bulbs are poisonous. | Source

The most dangerous part of some popular flowering plants that develop from bulbs is the bulb itself, since the plant toxins are concentrated in the bulb. Other parts of the plant also contain the toxins, however.

Daffodils and Narcissus

Daffodil bulbs contain calcium oxalate crystals and a toxic alkaloid called lycorine. Eating bulb tissue can cause mouth and throat irritation, stomach upset, nausea, vomiting and diarrhea. In addition, people who handle daffodil bulbs may develop dermatitis. This is a condition in which the skin becomes inflamed, red and itchy.

Daffodil bulbs are sometimes mistaken for edible bulbs, such as onions. An instance of this mistaken identity occurred in an English elementary school in 2009. Onion bulbs were collected from a school garden to add to soup that the children were making. Somehow daffodil bulbs became mixed with the onion bulbs. Twelve children developed stomach cramps and vomiting after eating the soup and were taken to hospital. They all recovered, however.

Daffodils belong to the genus Narcissus. Other members of this genus are also sold as house plants and can cause the same health problems.

Pink and blue hyacinth flowers
Pink and blue hyacinth flowers | Source

More Plants with Poisonous Bulbs

Hyacinths

Like daffodils, hyacinths contain calcium oxalate and lycorine. Once again the toxin is most concentrated in the bulbs of the plant. Eating hyacinth bulbs produces the same symptoms as eating daffodil bulbs.

Tulips

Tulip bulbs contain a toxin called tuliposide A. This can cause dermatitis in humans, but apparently only in people who are sensitive to the toxin. People who frequently handle the bulbs are most susceptible to the dermatitis. Tulips also contain calcium oxalate. Eating tulip bulbs may cause nausea and diarrhea.

Tulips growing outdoors
Tulips growing outdoors | Source
English ivy flowers and the leaves of the flowering stems
English ivy flowers and the leaves of the flowering stems | Source

English Ivy

English ivy (Hedera helix) is a climbing and trailing vine. Cultivated ivy is sold with both solid green leaves and variegated leaves. Leaves on the climbing stems have pointed lobes. The leaves on flowering stems are oval. English ivy is an attractive plant, but in the wild it can become invasive.

The liquid from a damaged ivy plant can severely irritate the skin and cause dermatitis. After handling ivy, a person may find that their skin is itching, red and blistered.

Ivy can also cause very serious internal problems, although generally many leaves must be eaten to cause these effects. A person may develop a fever and experience breathing difficulties, vomiting, delirium, hallucinations and convulsions.

English ivy leaves
English ivy leaves | Source

Lily Poisoning in Cats

In this article I've described the toxicity of plants in relation to humans. The effects of plant chemicals on pets such as cats and dogs are sometimes similar to the effects on humans. This isn't always the case, however, so pet owners should do some diligent research before they bring a plant into their home.

An example of the different effects of a plant poison in humans and pets is a toxin that's present in lilies. True lilies are often deadly for cats but aren't for humans. An unidentified chemical in the plant causes kidney damage in cats, which is frequently fatal.

It's very important that vet treatment is sought soon after a cat eats any part of a lily. The longer the time between ingestion and treatment, the less likely that the cat will survive. Signs of lily ingestion can also be signs of other illnesses. If a cat has had access to lilies, however, lily poisoning must always be considered as a cause of the symptoms. There is no time to lose before starting treatment, so it's important to get to a vet quickly.

Not all plants with lily in their name are true lilies (genus Lilium). The scientific name is important when considering whether a "lily" is toxic.

Lilies - very dangerous for cats
Lilies - very dangerous for cats | Source

Symptoms of Lily Poisoning in Cats

Symptoms of lily poisoning include:

  • vomiting
  • diarrhea
  • loss of appetite
  • depression
  • dehydration

All pet owners should know where their nearest animal emergency clinic is located as well as the hours when the clinic is open. They should also think about their transport method to the clinic. Public transit is rarely suitable in an emergency.

Preventing lily poisoning is much easier than treating it. Lilies in indoor pots, cut lilies in bunches of flowers and bouquets and even lily pollen that has fallen on other flowers in a bunch must all be avoided.

Someone with a cat in the family should never bring lilies into the home, even if the cat has shown no tendency to eat house plants. The risk is too great.

Lilies are beautiful but potentially dangerous.
Lilies are beautiful but potentially dangerous. | Source

Safe House Plants

I love my pets and also enjoy having house plants in my home. I would never buy plants that could harm my dogs or cats, but even so I have a nice collection of indoor plants. Someone with young children or pets can still enjoy the presence of house plants. They should do some research before they buy a plant to check that it is non-toxic for everyone in the family, however.

Further Reading: Poisoning by Plants

In the United States, the National Capital Poison Center offers a free phone number that people can call for help with a poisoning case. Help is provided 24 hours a day and 7 days a week.

The NIH website has information anout Dieffenbachia poisoning.

ASPCA (the American Society for the Prevention of Cruelty to Animals) has a useful website with lots of information about poisoning in pets. They have an emergency phone number that is available 24 hours a day and 365 days a year, but they say that a $65 fee "may be applied" to the caller's credit card.

ASPCA provides a list of toxic and non-toxic plants for dogs, cats and horses.

© 2013 Linda Crampton

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    • AliciaC profile image
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      Linda Crampton 2 months ago from British Columbia, Canada

      I think that daffodils are beautiful flowers.

    • profile image

      Jasmine Flower 2 months ago

      I have been daffodils all over the place

    • AliciaC profile image
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      Linda Crampton 5 months ago from British Columbia, Canada

      Thank you very much for the comment and for sharing the article, Maria.

    • profile image

      Maria 5 months ago

      Such an informative article. I must admit I have been eyeing some of the plants listed on here especially the indoor ones, will do better research now. Thanks for the great article I have shared with other moms too.

    • AliciaC profile image
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      Linda Crampton 2 years ago from British Columbia, Canada

      Hi, Patricia. Thank you very much for the visit and the angels.. Your Momma sounds like a wise woman! I hope things are going as well as possible for you.

    • AliciaC profile image
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      Linda Crampton 2 years ago from British Columbia, Canada

      Thank you very much, Dim. I don't know how I missed your comment! I appreciate it a great deal.

    • pstraubie48 profile image

      Patricia Scott 2 years ago from sunny Florida

      Well done...for those who are unaware of the dangers lurking in their yards and gardens this is very helpful.

      The main reason I am familiar with them is that my Momma was always growing and nurturing amazing plants including the ones you highlighted. She would tell us girls which ones to watch out for for our safety and the safety of our many animals.

      Hoping all is well with you. Angels are on the way to you this morning ...ps

    • Dim Flaxenwick profile image

      Dim Flaxenwick 3 years ago from Great Britain

      WOW !! A mountain of marvelous information here.

      The pictures are beautiful. How deceiving some beauty can be, eh?

      I once had a cat that ate our Spider Plant on a regular basis, then she would vomit. Always there'd be a furball or something nasty in the vomit. It seemed she knew how to cure her bad tummy, by making herself sick..

      You have done a good service by writing this hub. You've managed to make it interesting and beautiful, but with excellent warnings for those of us who had no idea about certain poisons.

    • AliciaC profile image
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      Linda Crampton 3 years ago from British Columbia, Canada

      Thank you very much for the comment and the share, ologsinquito. It is surprising that many popular house plants are poisonous for people or pets.

    • ologsinquito profile image

      ologsinquito 3 years ago from USA

      This is very important information, especially for people who have young children. I had no idea that those pretty peace lilies with such a lovely sounding name are poisonous. Voted up and shared.

    • AliciaC profile image
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      Linda Crampton 3 years ago from British Columbia, Canada

      Thank you very much, Kathi! Yes, the number 333 does sound kind of special! I wish more people knew about how dangerous lilies are to cats. If cats eat plants, lilies could be a big problem. Best wishes to you, Kathi.

    • Fossillady profile image

      Kathi 3 years ago from Saugatuck Michigan

      Alicia, I was aware of house plant poisoning, but what I never knew was that lilies are poisonous to cats! I don't have any indoors, but I have oodles of them in my landscape. My cats are indoor and outdoor cats and I will be careful to watch this! They like to hide and play around them and so far it's never been a problem! PS . . .I noticed you have 333 hubs and a perfect score! Very impressive my friend . . . good for you! Take care, Kathi

    • AliciaC profile image
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      Linda Crampton 4 years ago from British Columbia, Canada

      Thank you very much for the comment, Eddy. I appreciate the vote and the share, too!

    • Eiddwen profile image

      Eiddwen 4 years ago from Wales

      Interesting and useful so thank you for sharing Alicia.

      Voted up and sharing as always.

      Eddy.

    • AliciaC profile image
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      Linda Crampton 4 years ago from British Columbia, Canada

      Thank you very much for the visit and the comment, vespawoolf. It is scary to think of pets and children who have become sick after eating poisonous plants!

    • vespawoolf profile image

      vespawoolf 4 years ago from Peru, South America

      Wow, what a mountain of useful information. I didn't realize so many bulbs are toxic and the calla lilly really surpised me. It makes me wonderful how many pets have perhaps died without the owner's knowledge of what had made them ill. I will keep this bookmarked for future reference. Thanks!

    • AliciaC profile image
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      Linda Crampton 4 years ago from British Columbia, Canada

      Thank you very much for the votes and the share, Deb! I appreciate your visit and comment.

    • aviannovice profile image

      Deb Hirt 4 years ago from Stillwater, OK

      This was a perfect time for this article, right around the holidays, when plants and flowers tend to be given to friends and loved ones. It is never too early to be prepared. Awesome, up and sharing for safety reasons.

    • AliciaC profile image
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      Linda Crampton 4 years ago from British Columbia, Canada

      Thanks for the visit and the comment, Dianna. It's sad that some beautiful plants are toxic!

    • teaches12345 profile image

      Dianna Mendez 4 years ago

      I see some beautiful plants listed here and I have some of them around the home. The Caladium is such a common plant to use in arrangements, will have to watch for this toxic effect around pets and children. Thanks for the valuable information.

    • AliciaC profile image
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      Linda Crampton 4 years ago from British Columbia, Canada

      Hi, drbj. I think that Caladiums are beautiful plants! I'm very careful about what I bring into my home or garden, though, because I have cats and dogs in my family. Thanks for the visit.

    • drbj profile image

      drbj and sherry 4 years ago from south Florida

      We have most of these plants in the area of south Florida where I reside, Alicia, so I do appreciate learning about their potential poisonous effects. Caladiums and Dieffenbachia in particular seem to grow in abundance around here because of their beauty as outdoor plants.

    • AliciaC profile image
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      Linda Crampton 4 years ago from British Columbia, Canada

      Thanks, Eddy. I appreciate your visit and vote.

    • Eiddwen profile image

      Eiddwen 4 years ago from Wales

      Very interesting and useful Alicia.

      Thank you for sharing and voted up.

      Eddy.

    • AliciaC profile image
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      Linda Crampton 4 years ago from British Columbia, Canada

      Thank you very much for the visit and the comment, AvineshP.

    • AvineshP profile image

      Avinesh Prahladi 4 years ago from Chandigarh

      Oh really, I was not aware of the existence of these plants. Thanks for sharing this hub, I am sure that the majority of the readers are also not these plants.

      Thanks for the effort.

    • AliciaC profile image
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      Linda Crampton 4 years ago from British Columbia, Canada

      Thank you very much for the comment and all the votes, Prasetio!!

    • prasetio30 profile image

      prasetio30 4 years ago from malang-indonesia

      Very informative hub. Alicia, you always give the best for us. Thanks for writing and sharing with us. Voted up (useful, interesting, awesome and beautiful for the pictures)

      Prasetio

    • AliciaC profile image
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      Linda Crampton 4 years ago from British Columbia, Canada

      Thank you for the comment, mythbuster. I appreciate your visit!

    • AliciaC profile image
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      Linda Crampton 4 years ago from British Columbia, Canada

      Thanks for the visit, DDE. Poisonous plants are actually harmful for us and our pets, although it's possible that they may have some hidden health benefits, too. It will be interesting to see what future research reveals!

    • mythbuster profile image

      mythbuster 4 years ago from Utopia, Oz, You Decide

      Nice hub, easy to understand info. I like that you've also listed so many ill-health symptoms so we know what to look for if any of these plants are ingested. Thanks for writing this.

    • DDE profile image

      Devika Primić 4 years ago from Dubrovnik, Croatia

      Twelve Poisonous House Plants and Their Health Effects it is amazing how the poisonous plants have such benefits to ones health great hub, informative, useful and interesting voted up.

    • AliciaC profile image
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      Linda Crampton 4 years ago from British Columbia, Canada

      Thank you for the visit and the comment, Bishop55!

    • Bishop55 profile image

      Rebecca 4 years ago from USA

      Nice job on this, very informative!

    • AliciaC profile image
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      Linda Crampton 4 years ago from British Columbia, Canada

      Thank you so much for the kind comment, the votes and all the shares, DzyMsLizzy!! I appreciate your visit and your support very much.

    • AliciaC profile image
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      Linda Crampton 4 years ago from British Columbia, Canada

      Hi, Nell. Thanks for the vote and the share! Yes, it's a completely different situation when a home contains no small children or pets. There's a wider choice of house plants available then. I'm very glad that I have pets in my home, though!

    • DzyMsLizzy profile image

      Liz Elias 4 years ago from Oakley, CA

      What a well-done and comprehensive article. I have a landscaping class in my past, so I was aware that many plants contain toxic components, and of their potential danger as houseplants.

      However, you've gone over and above with such in-depth and detailed explanations, and marvelous photos!

      Voted up and across, shared here and on FB and pinned!

    • Nell Rose profile image

      Nell Rose 4 years ago from England

      Hi alicia, this is so important, and something I hadn't even thought about until recently. my friend brought in a plant for me, its grown really big. It wasn't until my brother told me it was poisonous did I even think about it? I can't remember the name of it now, but evidently its only dangerous to small children and pets, and I have neither in my house, but I do keep it in the front room on the shelf, its not that bad, but this is great to see the ones that are, voted up and shared! nell

    • AliciaC profile image
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      Linda Crampton 4 years ago from British Columbia, Canada

      Hi, epbooks. Thanks for the comment, and thanks for sharing the information, too!

    • epbooks profile image

      Elizabeth Parker 4 years ago from Las Vegas, NV

      Very informative hub. We used to have oleanders. They are beautiful, but definitely don't want to get sick from them. One thing I found out when moving to Vegas is that the Sago palm is fatal for dogs even if they only ingest a small piece of it and rarely there is nothing a doctor can do to help.

    • AliciaC profile image
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      Linda Crampton 4 years ago from British Columbia, Canada

      Thank you for describing your personal experience, agapsikap. I appreciate the comment, the vote and the share, as well!

    • agapsikap profile image

      agapsikap 4 years ago from Philippines

      Six months ago, I had removed all Dieffenbachia plant in my garden. Afraid that one of my kids will play on it's leaves. It is very itchy on the skin once you hold it specially the trunk. The same thing with my calladium. I had variety of calladium plants before. They are really beautiful plant though they are poisonous. It is better to plant them far from the reach of your kids. To prevent any accidental incident.

      This hub is really awesome. Voted up and Sharing!

    • AliciaC profile image
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      Linda Crampton 4 years ago from British Columbia, Canada

      Hi, Faith. It is very scary that we're not warned about the dangers of some plants when we buy them! The story of your pool surrounded by oleanders, young children and pets is frightening, as is your story about foxgloves! Poinsettias are interesting, though. Researchers are currently saying that they are only mildly poisonous, even though they were thought to be very dangerous until quite recently.

      Thank you very much for the votes and the share, Faith. Blessings to you, too!

    • Faith Reaper profile image

      Faith Reaper 4 years ago from southern USA

      Thanks for this important information here. I knew of many of these plants being poisonous. At our home in the city, we had a pool, and guess which lovely plants surrounded it ... yes, all sorts of different colored oleanders! Our children were young too, and we had pets, but thankfully, I guess none of them ever had eaten any of the plants!

      I found out about the Foxglove, as being so very dangerous, after I had already purchased some and a woman came up to me afterwards in the parking lot and asked me did I have small children, (I have grands) and I really did not want to believe her, but when I got home and looked it up, sure enough, very dangerous, and such beautiful flowers. But what got me, is there is not any warning on the plants anywhere saying they were poisonous. I know at Christmas, we tend to forget that the Poinsettia is very poisonous.

      What an extensive list, with many surprises, such as the tulips and ivy.

      Up and more and sharing

      Blessings, Faith Reaper

    • AliciaC profile image
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      Linda Crampton 4 years ago from British Columbia, Canada

      Thanks for the vote and the share, Thelma. I'm glad that you have a garden. It's very enjoyable to grow plants! It's good to know which plants are poisonous, though, as well as whether they are very toxic or only mildly toxic, so that care can be taken with them.

    • Thelma Alberts profile image

      Thelma Alberts 4 years ago from Germany

      Thanks for sharing this information. I have a lot of these plants in my garden and it´s only now that I learned they are poisonous. Voted up and shared.

    • AliciaC profile image
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      Linda Crampton 4 years ago from British Columbia, Canada

      Hi, Bill. Yes, it can be a problem when very young children want to put things in their mouth! Thank you very much for the comment, the vote, the share and the pin!

    • bdegiulio profile image

      Bill De Giulio 4 years ago from Massachusetts

      Hi Linda. Very interesting topic. We have a few of the plants you listed here in our home and I was not aware that they were toxic. We'll have to keep them in a safe place when our grandson is here as he seems to want to put everything in his mouth.

      Another great job, thanks for the education. Voted up, shared, pinned, etc.

    • AliciaC profile image
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      Linda Crampton 4 years ago from British Columbia, Canada

      Hi, Crafty. One of my three cats is a great climber. He likes to nibble the leaves of my indoor plants occasionally, too, if he can reach them! The other two cats aren't interested in the plants. It's good that you have an African violet, which is classified as non-toxic for cats. Thanks for the comment.

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      CraftytotheCore 4 years ago

      Such interesting information and beautiful photos. We have one house plant at the moment which is an African violet. I happen to have a great outdoor green thumb. No so much for indoor plants! LOL Our cat tries to eat anything we try to grow indoors. I found a glass shelf for my violet for the bathroom because there is a sunny window in there. My cat catapulted himself on to the shelf. Everything crashed down in to the tub. I raised the shelf higher so he can't reach it now.

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      Linda Crampton 4 years ago from British Columbia, Canada

      Thank you very much for such a kind comment, Martie! I'm sure my hubber score isn't permanent, but it is nice to have it!

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      Martie Coetser 4 years ago from South Africa

      It is actually scary to know that many of the beautiful plants in our garden and home are poisonous. Thanks for reminding me again, Alicia :) Excellent hub, as always :)

      Congratulations with you permanent 100 hubber score! You hubs are indeed exceptional stellar.

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      Linda Crampton 4 years ago from British Columbia, Canada

      Thank you for the visit and the comment, whonu.

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      whonunuwho 4 years ago from United States

      Nice work and very informative. Thank you for sharing. whonu

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      Linda Crampton 4 years ago from British Columbia, Canada

      Thank you for the lovely comment and the vote, ChitrangadaSharan!

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      Chitrangada Sharan 4 years ago from New Delhi, India

      Very useful information provided by you! And I must admit I was not aware of this, although these are such common Indoor plants.

      Thanks for sharing this wonderful hub! Voted up!

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      Linda Crampton 4 years ago from British Columbia, Canada

      Thank you for the comment and the votes, My Cook Book. I appreciate them both!

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      Dil Vil 4 years ago from India

      An informative post and a useful read. Thank you for the great hub. Voted UP and useful.

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      Linda Crampton 4 years ago from British Columbia, Canada

      Thank you very much for the comment and the vote, torrilynn!

    • AliciaC profile image
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      Linda Crampton 4 years ago from British Columbia, Canada

      Hi, Cynthia. Yes, I agree - many people seem to think that anything that's natural must be safer than anything that's artificial! This isn't always true, however. Thanks for the comment.

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      Linda Crampton 4 years ago from British Columbia, Canada

      Thank you, Audrey. I appreciate your comment and the share very much!

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      Linda Crampton 4 years ago from British Columbia, Canada

      Thank you for the visit, Vacation Trip. I appreciate the comment and the vote.

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      Linda Crampton 4 years ago from British Columbia, Canada

      Thank you very much for the comment, Martin.

    • torrilynn profile image

      torrilynn 4 years ago

      @AliciaC thanks for the great read. Very informative! voted up.

    • CMHypno profile image

      CMHypno 4 years ago from Other Side of the Sun

      Interesting hub Alicia. I think that too many of us have got into the mindset that if it's natural then it must be safe, but plants have developed ways to protect themselves just as other species have. But with information like this we can still enjoy the beauty while staying safe

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      Audrey Hunt 4 years ago from Nashville Tn.

      I'm so very glad to be informed about toxic plants. Have learned so much from this very good hub. So well done! Sharing and all. Thanks for teaching me a new awareness. - Audrey

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      Susan 4 years ago from India

      Interesting and a very informative post. Thanks for sharing. Voted up.

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      Martin Kloess 4 years ago from San Francisco

      I did not know this. thank you

    • AliciaC profile image
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      Linda Crampton 4 years ago from British Columbia, Canada

      It doesn't sound stupid at all, Bill! Plant stores generally don't warn people about the problems that an indoor plant can cause. One thing that really scares me is the lack of publicity about the dangers of lilies for cats. There is such a high death rate in cats from lily poisoning. As always, thanks for the visit and the comment.

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      Bill Holland 4 years ago from Olympia, WA

      I know this is going to sound stupid, but it never dawned on me that some indoor plants are poisonous. Thanks for the great information.