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Research Guides

IEATPLANTS Digital Laboratory

Toxic Plants

Agave

Agave plant image

Scientific Name

Agave sp.

Family Name

Agavaceae

Toxic Principle

Sap from the leaves; Seeds; Calcium oxalate raphides; Acrid volatile oils; Mechanically injurious

Clinical Signs

Oral mucosa irritation; Contact urticaria; Skin: Immediate burning, erythema, urticaria, and edema; Granule


Aloe

Aloe vera plant image

Common Name

Aloe; Barbados Aloe; Torch Plant

Scientific Name

Aloe sp.

Family Name

Liliaceae


Asparagus Fern

Asparagus fern plant image

Common Name

Sprengeri Fern; Lace Fern; Asparagus Fern

Scientific Name

Asparagus cetaceus

Family Name

Liliaceae

Toxic Principle

Non-toxic; Berries; Sapogenins; Foliage

Clinical Signs

Dermatitis; Irritant; Cardiac, sedative, and diuretic effects


Castor Bean

Castor bean plant image

Common Name

Castor Bean; Castor; Castor Oil Plant; palma Christi; Wonder Tree; Higuerilla; Steadfast

Scientific Name

Ricinus communis

Family Name

Euphorbiaceae

Toxic Principle

Leaves; Seeds; Ricin; Ricinin

Clinical Signs

Decrease blood pressure; Hypothermia; Decrease in blood glucose; Increase in serum hepatic enzymes: AST, ALT, LDH; Increase in BUN, calcium, phosphorous; Upset Stomach; Vomitting; Abdominal Pain; Nausea; Diarrhea; Anorexia; Trembling; Weakness; Sudden Collapse; Seizures; Exercise intolerance; Ataxia; Slight depression; Copious thick, ropy salivation; Thirst


Catnip

Catnip plant image

Common Name

Catmint; Catnip

Scientific Name

Nepeta

Family Name

Labiateae

Toxic Principle

Volatile oil

Clinical Signs

Odd behavior; Drowsiness; Disorientation

Toxic Principle

Homonatoloin; Aloin; Dried juice [latex]; Anthraquinones barbaloin; Anthraquinone or Anthracene glycosides

Clinical Signs

Vomiting; Diarrhea; Red urine; Skin irritation; Kidney inflammation


Crown of Thorns

Crown of Thorns plant image

Common Name

Christ Plant; Christ Thorn; Crown of Thorns

Scientific Name

Euphorbia milli

Family Name

Euphorbiaceae

Toxic Principle

Miliamines; Terpenes; Diterpenes; Alkaloidal esters of diterpenoid ingenol; Stems: the juice, leaves, and thorns

Clinical Signs

Eye irritation; Vomiting; Skin irritation; Diarrhea; Irritation to gastrointestinal tract


Dumb Cane

Dumbcain plant image

Common Name

Dumb Plant; Dumb Cane; Mother-in-law’s Tongue Plant

Scientific Name

Dieffenbachia sp.

Family Name

Araceae

Toxic Principle

Histamine poisoning; All parts: Leaves, stems, sap; Proteolytic enzymes; Calcium oxalate crystals; Other toxins

Clinical Signs

Swelling of throat; Impairment of speech; Excessive salivation; Pain and swelling of mouth; Skin rashes


English Ivy

English ivy plant image

Common Name

English Ivy; Common Ivy; Ivy

Scientific Name

Hedera helix

Family Name

Araliaceae

Toxic Principle

Saponin called hederin and hederagenin; Saponins; Leaves; Berries; Pentacyclic terpenoids

Clinical Signs

Nausea; Vomiting; Diarrhea; Convulsions; Skin rashes


Fiddle-Leaf Philodendron

Fiddle-leaf philodendron plant image

Common Name

Fiddle-leaf Philodendron; Tree Philodendron; Cut-leaf Philodenron

Scientific Name

Philodendron bipinnatifidum
(older name is P. Selloum)

Family Name

Araceae

Toxic Principle

Nephrotoxic; Entire Plant; Leaves; Oxalates; Calcium oxalate

Clinical Signs

Dermatitis; Excessive salivation; Red and swollen oral cavity; Pain, swelling, irritation to throat; Irritation and burning of mouth, lips, and tongue


Golden Pothos

Golden pothos plant image

Common Name

Devil’s Ivy ; Pothos; Golden Pothos

Scientific Name

Epipremnum aureum

Family Name

Araceae

Toxic Principle

Allergic reactions; Oxalic acid; Entire plant; Proteolytic enzymes; Calcium oxalate crystals

Clinical Signs

Vomiting; Diarrhea; Redness and swelling; Dermatitis; Itching and burning of lips, tongue, mouth, throat


Jade Plant

Jade plant image

Common Name

Jade Tree; Dollar Plant; Jade Plant

Scientific Name

Crassula sp.

Family Name

Crassulaceae

Toxic Principle

Leaves

Clinical Signs

Digestive upset; Nausea


Kalanchoe

Kalanchoe plant image

Common Name

Florist’s Kalanchoe; Kalanchoe; Palm Beach Belle

Scientific Name

Kalanchoe blossfeldiana

Family Name

Crassulaceae

Toxic Principle

Isoprene alkaloids; Cardiac glycosides; Cardiac bufadienolides; Bryotoxins; Non-toxic maybe

Clinical Signs

Labored respiration; Cardio-toxic effects; Excessive salivation; Digestive disturbance; Loss of interest in food and water


Oleander

Oleander plant image

Common Name

Oleander; ’OLIWA [Hawaii]; Rosa Laurel [Mexico]

Scientific Name

Nerium oleander

Family Name

Apocynaceae

Toxic Principle

Seeds; Vase water; Whole plant; Smoke from burning; Cardioactive glycosides

Clinical Signs

Diarrhea; Nausea; Vomiting; Slowing of heart-rate; Abnormal heart beat patterns


Peace Lilly

Peace lilly plant image

Common Name

Peace Lily; White Anthurium; Spathe Flower

Scientific Name

Spathiphyllum

Family Name

Araceae

Toxic Principle

Oxalic acid; Druses; Entire Plant; Raphides; Calcium oxalate crystals

Clinical Signs

Vomiting; Rashes; Redness and swelling; Irritation to digestive tract; Pain and burning of mouth, lips, tongue, and other oral surfaces


Pencil Tree Cactus

Pencil tree cactus plant image

Common Name

Finger Tree; Milk Bush; Indian Tree Spurge

Scientific Name

Euphorbia tirucalli

Family Name

Euphorbiaceae

Toxic Principle

Latex sap, euphorbol terpenes; Esters; Diterpenes; Entire Plant

Clinical Signs

Dermatitis; Gastritis; Conjunctivitis; Burning; Irritation; Diarrhea


Peperomia

Peperomia plant image

Common Name

Peperomia; Green-ripple Plant; Baby Rubber Plant

Scientific Name

Peperomia sp.

Family Name

Piperaceae

Toxic Principle

Leaves may be toxic; Low toxicity; Toxic alkaloids possible


Philodendron

Philodendron plant image

Common Name

Sweetheart Plant; Heart-leaf Philodendron; Parlor Ivy

Scientific Name

Philodendron scadens

Family Name

Araceae

Toxic Principle

Nephrotoxic; Entire Plant; Leaves; Oxalates; Calcium oxalate

Clinical Signs

Dermatitis; Excessive salivation; Red and swollen oral cavity; Pain, swelling, irritation to throat; Irritation and burning of mouth, lips, and tongue


Prickly Pear

Prickly pear plant image

Common Name

Bunny Ears Cactus; Rabbit Ears Cactus

Scientific Name

Opuntia sp.

Family Name

Cactaceae

Toxic Principle

Thorns; Barbs which encircle each glochidium

Clinical Signs

Domed papules; Erythema; Keratoconjunctivitis; Dermatitis; Corneal erosion


Red Emerald

Red emerald plant image

Common Name

Red Emerald

Scientific Name

Philodendron 'Red Emerald'

Family Name

Araceae

Toxic Principle

Irritant in leaves; Oxalic acid; Entire plant; Proteolytic enzymes; Calcium oxalate crystals

Clinical Signs

Redness and swelling; Vomiting; Diarrhea; Dermatitis; Itching and burning of lips, tongue, mouth, throat


Sago Palm

Sago palm plant image

Common Name

Sago Palm; Sago Cycas; Japanese Sago Palm

Scientific Name

Cycas revoluta

Family Name

Cycadaceae

Toxic Principle

Seeds; Foliage; Neurotoxic agent [amino acid]; Glycosides; Cycasin a carcinogenic, hepatotoxic chemical

Clinical Signs

Diarrhea; Liver damage; Vomiting; Increase in water intake; Nervous system depressants, drowsiness, coma, muscle paralysis


Sanseveria

Sanseveria plant image

Common Name

Snake Plant; Good-Luck Plant; Mother-in-law’s Tongue

Scientific Name

Sanseveria sp.

Family Name

Agavaceae

Toxic Principle

Entire plant; Leaves; Organic acids; Flowers; Hemolytic saponins

Clinical Signs

Nausea; Vomiting; Destruction of red blood cells; Dermatitis; Irritation to mouth, throat, gastrointestinal tract


Schefflera

Schefflera plant image

Common Name

Umbrella Tree; Starleaf; Australian Umbrella Tree

Scientific Name

Schefflera [a.k.a. Brassaia actinophylla]

Family Name

Araliaceae

Toxic Principle

Entire Plant; Saponins; Falcarinol; Calcium oxalate; Oxalic acid

Clinical Signs

Dermatitis; Vomiting; Leukopenia; Loss of coordination; Irritation of mouth, lips, tongue


Texas Mountain Laurel

Texas mountain laurel plant image

Common Name

Coral Bean; Mescal Bean; Texas Mountain Laurel

Scientific Name

Sophora secundiflora

Family Name

Fabaceae

Toxic Principle

Cytisine; Seeds; Quinolizidine alkaloids; Entire plant; Alkaloids similar to nicotine

Clinical Signs

Diarrhea; Vomiting; Falling down; Nausea; Neurologic disorder


Varigated Ficus

Variegated ficus plant image

Common Name

Variegated Ficus; Ficus; Variegated Weeping Fig

Scientific Name

Ficus benjamina ‘variegata’

Family Name

Moraceae

Toxic Principal

Non-toxic; Foliage; IgE mediated

Clinical Signs

Dermatitis; Asthma; Rhinitis; Conjunctivitis


Varigated Peperomia

Variegated peperomia plant image

Common Name

Baby Rubber Plant; Pepper Face; American Rubber Plant; Desert Privet

Scientific Name

Peperomia magnolialfolia variegata

Family Name

Piperaceae

Toxic Principal

Leaves; Alkaloids; Low toxicity - No known cases in humans, toxic to some animals; Non-Toxic


Wandering Jew

Wandering Jew plant image

Common Name

Wandering Jew; Inch Plant; Variegated Wandering Jew

Scientific Name

Tradescantia

Family Name

Commelinaceae

Toxic Principle

Unidentified irritant; Non-toxic; Possibly oxalate crystals

Clinical Signs

Dermatitis

[Red/Green Wandering Jew: Wandering Jew (Red/Green); Commelinaceae; Nontoxic]


Weeping Ficus

Weeping ficus plant image

Common Name

Weeping Fig; Benjamin Tree; Java Fig

Scientific Name

Ficus benjamina

Family Name

Movaceae

Toxic Principle

Non-toxic; Foliage; IgE mediated

Clinical Signs

Dermatitis; Asthma; Rhinitis; Itching of hands and arms; Conjunctivitis


Yucca

Yucca plant image

Common Name

Spineless Yucca; Soapweed; Spanish Bayonet

Scientific Name

Yucca sp.

Family Name

Agavaceae

Toxic Principle

Spines; Furostanols; Leaves; Saponins [steroidal]; Spirostanols – sarsasapogenin

Clinical Signs

Vomiting; Bloat; Diarrhea; Nausea; Mechanical damage