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Daffodils Cause Upset Stomachs

If you’ve ever wondered why deer and other critters love to eat tulips but turn up their noses at daffodils and hyacinths, here’s the scoop. Daffodils and hyacinths can be poisonous to deer -- and to humans . They’re not the only plants that can make you ill. Here’s a list of popular garden plants and bulbs that should not cross your lips. Or your children's.

* Hyacinth, narcissus, daffodils: eating the bulbs can cause nausea, vomiting and diarrhea, and can be fatal. Prolonged contact with the flowers of both plants can cause skin irritation.

* Lily-of-the-valley: the leaves and flowers can cause irregular heartbeat and pulse, as well as digestive upset and mental confusion.

* Iris: the underground stems can cause severe digestive problems.

* Star of Bethlehem and autumn crocus: the bulbs can cause vomiting.

* Rhubarb: the leaves are toxic and eating them can lead to death. The stems are safe to eat. They're delicious in pies and crumbles.

*Bleeding heart: the leaves and roots are poisonous in large quantities.

* Rhododendrons, azaleas, laurel: all parts of the plant can cause nausea, vomiting, depression and coma.

* Yew: the berries and leaves can be fatal.

* Jack-in-the-pulpit: all parts of the plant may cause burning of the mouth and tongue.

* Mistletoe: the berries are highly toxic.

A good rule of thumb – and one to teach the children – is that if birds and wild animals haven’t eaten berries on bushes and trees it probably means the berries are toxic.

Have you ever become sick from eating a plant? What was it? Let me know and I'll add it to the list. fpearson@mainstreetconnect.us.

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