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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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Monday - June 06, 2005

From: Bountiful, UT
Region: Rocky Mountain
Topic: Edible Plants
Title: Smarty Plants on edible and poisonous plants
Answered by: Nan Hampton

QUESTION:

I am trying to gather information regarding edible and poisonous plants in Utah's Salt Lake City area. Can you help? Thanks.

ANSWER:

We don't have anything specific on edible and poisonous plants of Utah's Salt Lake City area, but I can offer a strategy to pull together this information. A search on Amazon.com for "edible plants west" gives several choices. You can read reviews of Wild Edible Plants of Western North America by Donald Kirk and Edible and Medicinal Plants of the West by Gregory L. Tilford. The Forest Shop lists a bibliography on the subject of edible and medicinal plants as well as poisonous plants. Another search on Amazon.com for "poisonous plants west" came up with Common Poisonous Plants of Utah and the Intermountain West but, unfortunately, it is out of print. It might be possible to find a used copy, however. There is also listed Field Guide to Plants Poisonous to Livestock: Western U.S. that is in print.

There are several online databases for poisonous plants:

1) Cornell University Poisonous Plants Informational Database,

2) Purdue University Indiana Plants Poisonous to Livestock and Pets,

3) University of Illinois Veterinary Medicine Library Plants Toxic to Animals, and

4) North Carolina State University Poisonous Plants of North Carolina.

On the Native Plant Bibliography page on the Wildflower Center web page you can find a native plant bibliography for the Rocky Mountain Region by clicking on that region on the map. You can also search by keyword, author, or subject (Utah, for instance). You can also download a 4-page PDF file of the Native Plant Bibliography for the Rocky Mountains on the Regional Fastpacks page. So, by combining your resources, what you have here is a do-it-yourself guide to edible and poisonous plants of Utah.
 

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