En EspaŅol

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.

Help us grow by giving to the Plant Database Fund or by becoming a member

Did you know you can access the Native Plant Information Network with your web-enabled smartphone?

Share

Ask Mr. Smarty Plants

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

Search Smarty Plants
    
 
See a list of all Smarty Plants questions
Can't find the answer in our existing FAQs, submit a question to Mr. Smarty Plants.
Need help with plant identification, visit the plant identification page.
 
rate this answer
Not Yet Rated

Wednesday - October 27, 2004

From: Austin, TX
Region: Southwest
Topic: Poisonous Plants
Title: Smarty Plants on Poisonous Plants
Answered by: Nan Hampton

QUESTION:

Hi Mr. Smarty Plants, I wonder who among the wonderful staff at the Wildflower Center can answer this. I occasionally get requests for information on toxic or irritating plants. Beyond the obvious ones like poison ivy that everyone knows, what's there to look out for in Texas?

ANSWER:

The newly published book:
Hart, Charles R. et al. 2004. Toxic Plants of Texas: integrated management strategies to prevent livestock losses. Created by Texas Cooperative Extension. College Station: Texas A&M University Press.
is an excellent source for poisonous agricultural plants, but you are right that it doesn't list several plants irritating to humans that aren't potentially deadly to livestock. University of Tennessee Agricultural Extension Service has a database of Poisonous Plants of the Southern United States and Colorado State University has a Guide to Poisonous Plants which both would more closely match our region than the Cornell University Poisonous Plants Informational Database. However, neither lists the "irritating" plants other than poison ivy.
Shinner's and Mahler's Flora of North Central Texas (Diggs, George M. et al. 1999. Shinners&Mahler's Flora of North Central Texas. Fort Worth: Botanical Research Institute of Texas) gives information about the toxicity of plants in the North Central area of Texas, including Tragia (noseburn), Cnidoscolus (bull nettle/mala mujer), or Toxicodendron (poison ivy)
 

More Poisonous Plants Questions

Is the Texas buckeye as poisonous as the Ohio buckeye from Carrollton TX
April 10, 2011 - Is the Texas buckeye as poisonous as Ohio Buckeye?
view the full question and answer

Does Helasia diptera absorb toxic substances from Dover Plains NY
March 09, 2012 - Dear Mr. Plants, Halesia carolina is described as absorbing toxic substances: herbicides, pesticides and pollutants from water, air and soil. Does Halesia diptera do the same? Thank you.
view the full question and answer

Potential allelopathy of cultivar of Artemisia ludoviciana
March 09, 2009 - I recently submitted a question regarding allelopathic potential of artemisia ludoviciana on rusty blackhaw viburnum, not specifying that I meant Vibernum rufidulum. Mr. SP interpreted my viburnum as...
view the full question and answer

Thorn in the hand in Benton KY
June 14, 2010 - My husband got stuck by a thorn on a thorn bush and the thorn was a goldish copper color. There is a knot on his hand and pain in his fingers to his elbow. Do you know what kind of bush this could b...
view the full question and answer

List of poisonous plants for Bexar County, Texas
January 14, 2014 - I need to know local poisonous plants in Bexar County San Antonio. Please respond soon I'm trying to get Tenderfoot tonight and am doing my board of review.
view the full question and answer

Smarty Plants's Facebook profile Support the Wildflower Center by Donating Online or Becoming a Member today.

Mr. Smarty Plants wants you to be his Facebook friend. Click the Facebook icon to add yourself to Mr. Smarty Plants list of friends.
E-NEWSLETTER | BECOME A MEMBER | DONATE NOW | MEDIA | SITEMAP
© 2014 Lady Bird Johnson Wildflower Center