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
3 ratings

Wednesday - May 07, 2008

From: Cassadaga, FL
Region: Southeast
Topic: Poisonous Plants
Title: Lantana poisonous to people, animals
Answered by: Barbara Medford

QUESTION:

Mr. Smarty Plants, I read your response to the woman with the cow eating her plants over her neighbors fence. Just so you know- Lantana is poisionous. To humans and cattle. You recommended it as a plant she could use there, but I routinely check my pasture for beautyberry, and lantana because there are many toxic plants that are native to our area. Watch kids carefully when outside and warn them NEVER to eat a berry they find in the wild unless an adult says it's OK. Most berries are the most toxic part of a plant.

ANSWER:

You are absolutely right, and we were remiss in placing that plant in our proposed planting. In our defense, we recommended that everything be out of reach of the cows, because they would eat anything. However, we made no cautions about children in the area. Lantana is very widely used and recommended, even thought it not only has toxic parts, but has become invasive in some parts of the country, including Florida. Unfortunately, many plants have toxic parts, probably part of their defense mechanisms to stay alive and propagate the species. Your point that children should always be watched and trained to put nothing in their mouths that is not pre-approved is the most valuable comment you made. Thank you for bringing this to our attention.
 

More Poisonous Plants Questions

Do prairie verbenas (Glandularia bipinnatifida) have toxic sap?
March 16, 2009 - Dear Mr. Smarty Plants, I live in Wimberley, TX and my 6 year old daughter picked wildflowers for her Mom over the weekend. I believe the species was Prairie Verbena but not 100% certain. Now, fo...
view the full question and answer

Could ammonia harm poisonous, non-native oleander in Bay Point CA
December 20, 2009 - Could ammonia harm my Oleander plant? I have been spraying ammonia under it to keep neighborhood cats from using the soil under the plant as a sand box. If so, do you have any suggestions as to what...
view the full question and answer

Toxicity of non-native red-tip photinia to fish from Friendswood TX
April 10, 2013 - Mr. Smarty Plants, I have seen several questions on Red Tip Photinia (RTP) concerning toxicity to horses, dogs and children. We recently lost over 100 gold fish and 6 large KOI in our man made back ...
view the full question and answer

Sap from agave causing reactions from Edgewater FL
April 06, 2012 - Not only was I stuck with the century plant thorns and needle like ends when I was digging up its pups, but I also broke the carrot-like root of a few when I was transplanting and got the white sap on...
view the full question and answer

Evergreen trees for California that are non-toxic for dogs
February 19, 2014 - Hi, we live in California, San Bernardino County and would like to know what evergreen trees are safe to plant in our backyard with 2 little dogs being around. I did quite some search online but ever...
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 | STAFF
© 2015 Lady Bird Johnson Wildflower Center