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Q. Who is Mr. Smarty Plants?

A: There are those who suspect Wildflower Center volunteers are the culpable and capable culprits. Yet, others think staff members play some, albeit small, role. You can torture us with your plant questions, but we will never reveal the Green Guru's secret identity.

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Ask Mr. Smarty Plants is a free service provided by the staff and volunteers at the Lady Bird Johnson Wildflower Center.

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Saturday - April 07, 2007

From: Lampasas, TX
Region: Southwest
Topic: Poisonous Plants
Title: Toxicity of seeds of Texas Mountain Laurel for dog
Answered by: Nan Hampton

QUESTION:

I have a Tx Mountain Laurel that is in 1 end of a dog pen. I just heard the seeds are poisonous. Is this true & should we pull the seeds off so the dog can't reach them to eat? Thanks for your assistance.

ANSWER:

Sophora secundiflora (mescal bean) is indeed listed in the Toxic Plant Database for Texas. It is also listed in the Poisonous Plants of South Carolina, where its toxicity is listed as low. Even though the toxicity factor is low and the beans are not something a dog is very likely to eat, it probably isn't a bad idea to remove as many of the seed pods as possible from the tree so that they don't fall into the dog's pen.

 

 

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