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
17 ratings

Wednesday - March 18, 2009

From: Enterprise, AL
Region: Southeast
Topic: Poisonous Plants
Title: Is cat palm (Chamaedorea cataractarum) poisonous?
Answered by: Nan Hampton

QUESTION:

I have a Cataractarum (Cat) Palm and am wondering if it is poisonous. I have a Cockatiel who likes to play in it. Thank you!

ANSWER:

Chamaedorea cataractarum (cat palm) is a native of southeastern Mexico. Our focus and expertise here at the Lady Bird Johnson Wildflower Center are with plants native to North America; and, yes, we are aware that Mexico is part of North America, but at the moment we do not include Mexico in our area of expertise.  We hope to remedy that in the near future.  Nevertheless, we can tell you what we have been able to find out about the possible toxicity of the cat palm.  First none of Mr. Smarty Plants' favorite Toxic Plant databases (Poisonous Plants of North Carolina, Cornell University Plants Poisonous to Livestock, Canadian Poisonous Plants Information System, University of Pennsylvania Poisonous Plants, Texas Toxic Plant Database, University of California-Davis Toxic Plants, or Botanical Dermatology Database) lists it.  Googling 'plants toxic birds' brings up a long list of sites that will give you information.  Drs. Foster and Smith Pet Education.com has two lists under their article Bird Safety: Poisonous and Safe Plants for Birds. Neither the cat palm nor any other palm appears on the 'toxic' list.  Several palms (e.g., lady palm, paradise palm, bamboo palm) appear on the 'safe' list.  The cat palm is not listed specifically, but Chamaedorea seifrizii (bamboo palm) is very closely related to the cat palm (same genus as well as same family).  CockatielCottage.com also has two lists under their article Safe and Toxic Plant Lists and on their 'safe' list they have "Palms". You can check out the other toxic plants lists that you can find on the internet, but it looks to me as if the cat palm is safe for your cockatiels.

 

 

More Poisonous Plants Questions

Vine non-toxic to alpacas and dogs from Fowler CA
June 29, 2012 - We have alpacas and would like to plant a flowering vine on a backyard fence that adjoins the pasture. We live in Central California so we have many hot days during the summer and would like a plan...
view the full question and answer

Non-native Star Jasmine poisonous to dogs from Dallas
May 20, 2013 - Is star jasmine poisonous to dogs?
view the full question and answer

Is red tip Photinia toxic to dogs?
September 18, 2012 - Is the red tip bush toxic to dogs?
view the full question and answer

Toxicity of Texas Mountain Laurel seeds to livestock and dogs?
March 09, 2011 - Are the seeds of the Texas Mountain Laurel poisonous to livestock or dogs? Thanks
view the full question and answer

Source for seeds of New Mexico locust from Abilene TX
October 23, 2012 - Is there a place to buy Robinia neomexicana native to Texas or order seed from Texas grown plants?
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