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

Wednesday - August 21, 2013

From: Kempner, TX
Region: Southwest
Topic: Poisonous Plants, Trees
Title: Shade trees not toxic to dogs in Kempner TX
Answered by: Nan Hampton

QUESTION:

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 pups eat everything). Can you recommend some pet friendly varieties to provide shade for my puppies? Our yard is high alkaline and full of limestone, we get a fairly common 10 mph wind, no trees yet and tons of sun. Thanks in advance for your advice!!

ANSWER:

The ASPCA Toxic and Non-Toxic Plant List – Dogs doesn't list oaks as being toxic to dogs.  Certainly, they aren't to deer since they feast on the acorns and tender leaves.    However, Poisonous Plants of North Carolina, which is aimed at humans says that raw acorns can cause problem but  "causes only low toxicity if eaten".  Pennsylvania's Poisonous Plants and Cornell University's Plants Poisonous to Livestock, which are focused on livestock, list it as toxic with horses and cattle being the most often affected.  The ASPCA list does say that Ilex opaca (American holly) and Ilex aquifolium (European holly) are toxic to dogs.  We can find you shade trees, however, that are neither oaks or hollies and are not toxic to dogs.

Ulmus americana (American elm)  Here is more information from Texas A&M's Tree Planting Guide.

Ulmus crassifolia (Cedar elm)  Here is more information from Texas A&M's Texax Tree Planting Guide.

Fraxinus albicans [synonym=Fraxinus albicans] (Texas ash)   Here is more information from Texas A&M's Tree Planting Guide.

Carya illinoinensis (Pecan)  Here is more information from Texas A&M's Texas Tree Planting Guide.

Juglans microcarpa (Little walnut)  Pennsylvania's Poisonous Plants database says that Juglans nigra (Black walnut) is toxic to horses.  Here is more information from Texas A&M's Texas Tree Planting Guide.

Prosopis glandulosa (Honey mesquite)  Here is more information from the Texas Tree Planting Guide.

 

From the Image Gallery


American elm
Ulmus americana

Cedar elm
Ulmus crassifolia

Texas ash
Fraxinus albicans

Pecan
Carya illinoinensis

Little walnut
Juglans microcarpa

Honey mesquite
Prosopis glandulosa

More Trees Questions

Planting and care of Desert Willow in Golden Valley, AZ.
May 17, 2013 - I got a desert willow to plant in yard. Some of the leaves dried out before I could plant. Will that stop the tree from growing into a decent size tree or stay as a shrub?
view the full question and answer

Colony of bees nesting in sycamore
July 06, 2010 - I have a very large, old sycamore tree that has recently become home to a colony of honey bees. They have taken up dwelling in a hollow limb of the tree about 25 feet off the ground. While this is gre...
view the full question and answer

Difference between liveoaks (Quercus fusiformis and Q. virginiana)
March 17, 2008 - I am a little confused on the identification differences between Quercus fusiformis and Quercus virginiana. How can you properly identify between the two?
view the full question and answer

Tree for wet area in Central Illinois
July 30, 2010 - I live in Central Illinois. When it rains I get a lot of water in my backyard. What kind of tree would be best to plant in this wet area?
view the full question and answer

Live oak trees with rusty spots and holes on tree trunks
September 21, 2011 - I have live oak trees that have developed rusty spots, small holes on the tree trunks and sawdust on the trees base. They were planted in Oct 2010. We have had a hot dry summer in Texas this year an...
view the full question and answer

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