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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.

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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.

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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!

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Thursday - October 20, 2011

From: cha, NC
Region: Southeast
Topic: Poisonous Plants
Title: Lantana induced rash
Answered by: Anne Ruggles

QUESTION:

What should I use for a rash caused by a Lantana scratch on my arm

ANSWER:

The genus Lantana (commonly known as lantana) includes more than 150 species of hairy-leaved and often prickly-stemmed shrubs and herbaceous perennials in the verbena family (Verbenaceae) that are native to tropical America. The hairs on the leaves can cause contact dermatitis (usually minor skin irritation) in some people. The berries are poisonous to people and animals.

The University of North Carolina has a complete description of Lantana and a key to the poisonous plants of North Carolina. 

The Texas Poison Control Center lists the plant as poisonous and an irritant on contact and recommend that anyone encountering a problem call their hot line for more information.

The Mayo Clinic has directions for treatment of contact dermatitis. They further recommend, as you have no doubt already figured out, avoiding contact by complete avoidance or wearing gloves and long-sleeved shirt when handling the plant.

The National Health Service of the United Kingdom also has a series of recommendations for treating contact dermatitis.

 

 

From the Image Gallery


Texas lantana
Lantana urticoides

Texas lantana
Lantana urticoides

Hammock shrubverbena
Lantana canescens

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