Ask The Plant Expert: “Can you identify these weeds? Please Help! I am in Central California and want to pasture some milk goats. I know the one with yellow “fruit” is a member of the Nightshade family and deadly to goats. Please help me identify what is growing here!” – Mad Science
Is a Princess Alexia Violet a type of lily? I have cats and I know that lilies are poisonous to them. I was wondering if a Princess Alexia Violet is a type of lily. -Lorriane
Flower Shop Network Plant Expert Reply:
The Princess Alexia violet is a type of Anthurium, specifically Anthurium andreanum. I am not personally familiar with this plant, but I am very familiar with Anthurium scherzeranum, also known as Flamingo flower which is toxic to cats and dogs. I assume the Anthurium andreanum would be as well.
For more information on Anthurium Care click here.
Hope this information is helpful.
Ask The Plant Expert:
I got a plant for Mother’s Day. It’s name is Croton, it’s a black waxy leaf with red veins in it. I went online and on one web site it stated that it is highly poisonous to pets and people. I have it on my enclosed patio and my cats go out there all the time. So i was wondering if i should return it? If you could please email me back asap, cause I’d like to keep the plant, but I love my cats and myself more. Thank you for any help, or if your not sure if you could maybe have any ideas on who i could contact. Thank-you, Anneke
Yes, the croton house plant is toxic for plants and people, but only if it’s digested. If you’re cat has a habit of chewing on plants, you may want to try a different plant. However, the plant tastes terrible, and accidental poisonings are rare.
If any part of the croton is ingested, it would cause vomiting and/or diarrhea, and in large doses could be fatal. It is also a good idea to wear gloves when pruning, and wash your hands after touching the plant.
Although crotons are toxic, they are a beautifully colored house plant that requires little care to maintain. As long as you leave it alone and teach kitty to not crave croton salads, you can live happily with your new plant. However, if you think your cat is prone to chewing on leaves, you might consider a different plant. Be sure to check the FSN House Plant Toxicity List for help.
Looking for an easy way to add fresh color and interest to a room in your home? What better way to do that and bring spring indoors than with flowers?
You can’t go wrong with African Violets. Not only are they gorgeous, brightly colored and showy, they are safe around kids and pets! With an array of colors including violet, blue, red, white, pink, cream, soft yellow, and bi- or multicolored flowers, it’s easy to see why they are a favorite houseplant. Care of African violets is relatively easy and requires an environment of bright to moderate, but consistent light in an evenly moist and humid atmosphere. (Great for bathrooms and kitchens)
Where To Find African Violets
For the best selection of house plants, such as the African Violet, head on over to your local flower shop! You can rest assured they have had the best of care there. If you do not know your local florist, use FSN’s handy florist finder!
When it comes to our pets, like kids, we are very protective. You might have given up growing green plants in your home just to keep them safe. However, you don’t have to abandon all house plants! These 5 house plants are great and safe for Fido!
African violets (Saintpaulia) are well-known, colorfully blooming plants found in many gardens, or kept as houseplants. With an array of colors including violet, blue, red, white, pink, cream, soft yellow, and bi- or multicolored flowers, it’s easy to see why. Care of African violets is relatively easy and requires an environment of bright to moderate, but consistent light in an evenly moist and humid atmosphere. The African Violet is also safe for cats and dogs!
Schlumbergera bridgesii or Christmas Cactus is a cactus from the coastal mountains of south-eastern Brazil. Plants grow on trees or rocks in habitats which are generally shady with high humidity and can be quite different in appearance from their desert-dwelling cousins. This flower is usually available in white, pink, yellow, orange, red or purple. This blooming plant is perfect for houses with cats and dogs!
Bird’s Nest Fern (Asplenium nidus) plants are tropical plants native to Hawaii and the Pacific Islands. Very slow-growing, Asplenium nidus plants are excellent for seasoned houseplant growers. Care for Asplenium nidus plants, sometimes known as spleenwort, requires attention to watering and propagation, but does not require as much attention to fertilization and light as many other houseplants. Bird’s Nest Fern plants, though care is not for the faint of heart, make beautiful additions to homes, rock gardens, and patios, in addition to being safe for your pets.
Parlor Palm (Chamaedora elegans) is a very popular houseplant with rich green, slightly arched and slender leaves. Parlor Palm plants are often passed from generation to generation as they are very slow-growing and live actively for many years. This pet-friendly house plant ranges from a few inches to three feet, making Parlor Palm plants ideal for tabletop decorations, terrariums, and other small spaces inside a house. Care for Parlor Palm plants is moderately easy; they require an evenly moist environment with moderate humidity.
Ask The Plant Expert:
What houseplant is good to order this time of the year in West Point NY? I also need something not poisonous to babies and cats. -Cassandra
Flower Shop Network Plant Expert Reply:
If you want a blooming plant, I would recommend the Christmas Cactus (Schlumbergera bridgesii) or Bromeliad (Guzmania lingulata major), which are both very safe for pets and children.
If you want a nice green plant, I would recommend a Parlor Palm (Chamaedorea elegans).
Ask the Expert: Is Lucky Bamboo poisonous to cats?
Have received a Lucky Bamboo plant, need to know if it will make my cats sick—since they believe plants are there to be eaten. Dallas
Plant Expert Reply:
According to the ASPCA Dracaena sanderiana (lucky bamboo or ribbon plant) can be harmful to cats. If ingested, it causes dilated pupils, abdominal pain, increased heart-rate and drooling. Cats who ingest lucky bamboo will show signs of depression, no appetite, drooling, vomiting, incoordination and weakness. If you think your cat has ingested lucky bamboo, call your veterinarian for recommendations on how to handle the toxin.
This lucky bamboo question was sponsored by local flower shops across the United States and Canada.
Ask The Expert: My Sons dog ate all the leaves off my peace lily. Please tell me this plant
isn’t toxic and his dog will be ok. Thanks, Gina
Peace lilies are on the toxic list for dogs. However, it depends on how much he ingests. Peace will cause the following symptoms: oral irritation, intense burning and irritation of mouth, tongue and lips, excessive drooling, vomiting, difficulty swallowing. If the dogs develops beathing problems, excessive drooling and/or difficulty swallowing call your vet. The dog may need something to counteract the insoluble calcium oxalates from the peace lily.
Please keep me posted on your dog. I have 2 dogs myself and will worry until I know how yours is.
Ask the Expert: what are the names of plants and flowers that are poisonous.
I work as a floral designer and I am asked all the time what plants and flowers are poison to animals and humans. Kelly
First I want to clarify the difference between “poisonous as in deadly” and “poisonous as an irritant”. Many plants listed as poisonous are not deadly or really toxic, but rather cause an irritation to the mouth, stomach, skin or respiratory system. Why is this important? Because the classification of plants being poisonous is matter of interpretation and myths. For example, poinsettias are considered poisonous which is not all together true. There is no documented case where someone has died from ingesting a poinsettia. Secondly, the amount one a would have to ingest in order to accumulate the toxin level for death would be immense. However, poinsettias can cause great irritation to the skin or mouth.
When we discuss poisonous houseplants, we should take the approach that the American Animal Hospital Association takes on its Healthypet.com site with regards to its guide to toxic plants and foods. They state, “If you have these plants or foods, you need not dispose of them-just keep them away from pets and children.” Of course, plants that are deadly may not need to be in the home of small children or young pets. However, plants that can cause irritation or stomach upset may only need to be placed somewhere pets and children can’t reach them.
Here is a quick top 10 guide to plant toxicity for florists (note there may be plants that are carried by florists that are not listed. In these cases you will have to research that specific plant or email me and I will find out and add it to the list).
Houseplants with High Poison Plant Classification
According to many sources these ten houseplants are highly toxic to dogs, cats or children. The toxicity resides in ingesting the plants. So it is important to keep these away from dogs, cats or children who might chew on them. They are all wonderful plants and should not be excluded from our lives as long as we keep them under appropriate supervision.
Flowers that are considered highly poisonous are: Foxglove (Digitalis), Amaryllis bulb, Bleeding heart, Lily-of-the-valley, Delphinium, Larkspur, Monkshood, Anthurium, lilies and Calla lily. Many times with flowers it is the bulb from which they come that is toxic if eaten by a dog or a cat.
There are other houseplants and flowers that are considered a mild or moderate risk. Although not a complete list by any means, this is a short break down of plants or flowers that cause a mild or moderate irritation or toxicity in dogs, cats or children:
Peace lily, Chinese evergreen, Benjamin fig, Corn Plant, Dracaenas, Nephthytis, rubber plant, Pothos,
English Ivy, Mother-in-law tongue, Azlaea, Croton, Easter Lily, Hyacinth, Daffodils, Chrysanthemum, Bird of Paradise, iris, lupine.
Hopefully this information will help you and your customers select the appropriate houseplants and flowers for their specific situation.
I have had many of these plants and flowers in my home. Fortunately for me my puppies found that these plants were not interesting and did not taste good. I don’t worry about having “poisonous” plants in my home or yard. I do make a mental note of plants that can be harmful in case my vet needs to know my dogs have been exposed to.
Click on the button below to find the right house plant for your home. Flowering house plants keep us smiling and cheery; green house plants ease our minds and provide comfort, while tropical house plants make us feel composed and sophisticated.
If you don’t see a particular plant on the lists above. Contact me for a more comprehensive list.