Plant Smart – Summer Safety!

Believe it or not, poisonous plants are everywhere. Their leaves and berries can be dangerous and even deadly.

Homeowners need to pay special attention if animals or small children frequent their yards. Most plant exposures result in only minor, if any, toxicity. However, poisonous plants, household cleaners and medicines are the three most common causes of accidental poisoning in children under five years of age. It is important to be aware of your surroundings and be PLANT SMART.

Know what plants are in your home and yard. Label all potted plants, and make a sketch of your yard with the names of all plants, trees and bushes.

Keep plants, seeds, berries and bulbs stored safely away from children and pets. Teach your children to keep plants, berries, flowers or mushrooms out of their mouths.

REMEMBER THAT NO PLANT IS COMPLETELY SAFE! Plants that are safe for animals or birds can be poisonous to humans. If you see a plant or berry being eaten by an animal, this does not mean that the plant is safe for people. For example, birds safely eat poke and mistletoe berries, but these berries can be very dangerous if consumed by a person.

If you have ingested a poisonous plant, call your local Poison Control Center or 911 immediately for help.

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