Host an Event Volunteer Join Tickets

Support the plant database you love!

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

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!

Need help with plant identification, visit the plant identification page.

 
rate this answer
1 rating

Tuesday - May 12, 2009

From: Round Rock, TX
Region: Southwest
Topic: Poisonous Plants
Title: Is Penstemon cobaea poisonous
Answered by: Nan Hampton

QUESTION:

Is Penstemon cobaea Nutt or Wild foxglove poisonous like real fox glove? It is on a playground and Im concerned that it may not be safe for children.

ANSWER:

Penstemon cobaea (wild foxglove) does NOT appear in any of our 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

Toxic Plants of Texas

University of California-Davis Toxic Plants

So, despite the fact that it shares the same common name as the non-native Digitalis purpurea, Foxglove (which is highly toxic), Penstemon cobaea (wild foxglove) is NOT poisonous and should be perfectly safe to have in a playground.


Penstemon cobaea

Penstemon cobaea

Penstemon cobaea

 

 

More Poisonous Plants Questions

Is Florida anisetree appropriate for school planting in New Orleans?
April 22, 2010 - Illicium floridanum, Florida anisetree We are considering using this plant for a landscape at a school. I have been informed that it is poisonous, but not by a reliable source. I am otherwise very...
view the full question and answer

Agave attenuata Poisonous?
March 12, 2015 - Is Agave attenuata (foxtail agave) poisonous to horses or humans?
view the full question and answer

Is Purple Hopseed poisonous to dogs?
September 03, 2011 - Is the Purple Hopseed plant safe for dogs? We would like to plant a hedge of the purple hopseed at my parents home. They are elderly and have a small (8lb.) dog that they just love so much..I would ...
view the full question and answer

Broad leaved evergreens for DC
May 06, 2011 - We are looking for a flowering evergreen shrub, native to the mid-Atlantic, that grows in part shade but will tolerate full sun. We have been researching rhododendrons and azaleas but are concerned a...
view the full question and answer

Is there a vine in Indiana with poisonous thorns?
December 27, 2011 - I was cut at the left big toe by a brownish/red thorny vine while tracking thru dry grass near the bridge exiting 278. I'm from Indianapolis, in 46208. Was wondering if I was exposed to a poisonous v...
view the full question and answer

Support the Wildflower Center by Donating Online or Becoming a Member today.