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
Not Yet Rated

Friday - September 09, 2011

From: Houston, TX
Region: Southwest
Topic: Poisonous Plants
Title: What to do if Mexican buckeye seeds are eaten
Answered by: Nan Hampton

QUESTION:

What to do if seeds of the Mexican buckeye are eaten? I didn't know they were toxic. Please let me know as soon as you can. Thank you

ANSWER:

Ungnadia speciosa (Mexican buckeye) is, indeed, toxic.   If you haven't already gone to your doctor or to an emergency clinic, you should go immediately and tell exactly what you ate.  Identify it by the botanical name.  They will have the information on how to treat you.

Here is information from the US Forest Service Database:

"Toxicity:  The sweet seeds of Mexican buckeye taste like pistachio nuts
and were formerly considered as a potential human food source [19].
Stanford [19] and his colleagues reportedly consumed up to 20 seeds
without suffering ill effects.  However, results of laboratory tests
with rats soon put an end to these culinary experiments.  Rats which had
ingested Mexican buckeye seeds soon exhibited numerous signs of both
neurological and organ damage and most died within 3 weeks [19].  Seeds
can cause dizziness, nausea, and abdominal discomfort in humans [6,16]."

My advice to you is not to try eating any parts of plants you are not familiar with unless you have determined for sure that they are NOT toxic.

 

From the Image Gallery


Mexican buckeye
Ungnadia speciosa

Mexican buckeye
Ungnadia speciosa

Mexican buckeye
Ungnadia speciosa

Mexican buckeye
Ungnadia speciosa

More Poisonous Plants Questions

Food for a veiled chameleon in Columbus GA
May 20, 2011 - Hi I own a Veiled Chameleon, and have been recently searching for different options as to live plant use for their cage. It has pretty much come down to using hibiscus plants and only hibicus plants. ...
view the full question and answer

Plants Toxic to Horses
October 26, 2013 - I want to put planters on the front of my horse barn, which is also in the front field, so the horses could eat what is in it if they want to. I am looking to put a miniature pine tree in the planter....
view the full question and answer

Smarty Plants on poisonous plants
August 03, 2001 - Do you have a list of plants that are poisonous to children and pets?
view the full question and answer

Shade trees not toxic to dogs in Kempner TX
August 21, 2013 - Dear Mr Smarty Plants, we are looking for shade trees to plant around our home in Kempner, Tx. I saw another family that asked a similar question but we have dogs and holly or oak trees are toxic (my...
view the full question and answer

Damaged leaves on bottlebrush buckeye from Glen Mills PA
June 09, 2013 - My recently planted bottlebrush buckeye plants' leaves are looking damaged but it doesn't look like insect or fungus damage. They look battered by wind but I don't understand why that would happen...
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