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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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Thursday - June 04, 2009

From: Indianapolis, IN
Region: Midwest
Topic: Poisonous Plants
Title: Is purple grass poisonous if eaten by a dog?
Answered by: Nan Hampton

QUESTION:

Is purple grass poisonous if eaten by a dog?

ANSWER:

Well, I'm afraid you're going to have to be a little more specific than just "purple grass".  In our Native Plant Database Mr. Smarty Plants found 6 different grasses that had a common name that included the word "purple".

Andropogon glaucopsis (purple bluestem)

Aristida purpurea (purple threeawn)

Calamagrostis purpurascens (purple reedgrass)

Eragrostis spectabilis (purple lovegrass)

Tridens flavus (purpletop tridens)

Triplasis purpurea (purple sandgrass)

Then there are non-native ornamental purple grasses, for example, Pennisetum setaceum 'Rubrum' (Purple Fountain Grass) and there are probaby more non-native ornamental purple grasses.

If your purple grass happens to be one of the 7 species above, then I can tell you that it doesn't appear in any of the following toxic plant databases:

Poisonous Plants of North Carolina

Cornell University Plants Poisonous to Livestock

Toxic Plants of Texas 

University of Pennsylvania Poisonous Plants

Canadian Poisonous Plants Information System

ASPCA list of Toxic and Non-Toxic Plants for Dogs

If one of the 7 species above is not the grass your dog has eaten, then you can google "purple grass" to see if you can find another species that it might be.  If you find one, you can check for its scientific name in the toxic plant databases listed above. 

 

 

 

 

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