Rent Shop Volunteer Join

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

Please forgive us, but Mr. Smarty Plants has been overwhelmed by a flood of mail and must take a break for awhile to catch up. We hope to be accepting new questions again soon. Thank you!

Need help with plant identification, visit the plant identification page.

 
rate this answer
18 ratings

Sunday - July 27, 2008

From: Lake Francis, MB
Region: Canada
Topic: Poisonous Plants
Title: Plant with poisonous thorns
Answered by: Nan Hampton

QUESTION:

Is there a bush or tree out there that has thorns on it that can make you swell and cause you to feel like you can hardly move you're whole hand.

ANSWER:

I searched the Canadian Poisonous Plants Information System for such a plant in Manitoba. I found the following two plants with stinging hairs which might be considered very small thorns, but I could find nothing with large thorns that has the effect that you mention.

Laportea canadensis (Canada nettle) has stinging hairs that can cause pain and discomfort. Here are photos and more information.

Urtica dioica (stinging nettle) also has stinging hairs that give a painful sting, swelling, itching and numbness. More information and photos.

If you didn't actually see the thorn or thorns that caused this, you might consider that you were bitten by a spider or stung by some insect.


Urtica dioica

 

 

More Poisonous Plants Questions

Fruit and nut trees safe for horses.
May 11, 2015 - My husband and I just moved to Elgin. We have always wanted to grow fruit/nut baring trees but didn't take in to consideration that horses might eat them. We have never had land or horses before, s...
view the full question and answer

Dwarf oyster plant dying in Sunrise FL
July 06, 2012 - WHAT WOULD BE KILLING MY DWARF OYSTER PLANTS
view the full question and answer

Poisonous Trees
September 23, 2004 - Are redbuds and catalpa trees poisonous?
view the full question and answer

Spreading Poison Oak to Clothes and Shoes
May 31, 2013 - I had a poison oak rash about 2 years ago and during that time I had to attend a wedding. At the wedding I wore a pair of dress shoes and a pair of cowboy boots. Can I wear these shoes again? Is there...
view the full question and answer

Are any cherry trees poisonous from Clovis CA?
April 30, 2011 - Are there some cherry trees that are poisonous? if so, how do you identify them?
view the full question and answer

Support the Wildflower Center by Donating Online or Becoming a Member today.