Child and Pet-Safe Garden and House Plants
Children and pets are always inquisitive about their environment. Vivid and colorful flowers and leaves are an invitation for further exploration and even snacking – so to make a safe environment for your whole family, check out those plants and seeds before you bring them into your home and garden. Knowing a little about the plant world can make a difference in the health and happiness of those sharing your home.
Some plants to avoid
Moonflower – Ipomoea: You may be tempted to plant this one simply because of the fragrant flowers that open at night. This vining plant has been enjoyed by many satisfied gardeners for years. The perfume of these blossoms attracts hummingbird moths to the moonlight garden and this one even self-seeds. Avoid it as the seeds are poisonous.
Plant safety away from home
Some parks and other public places and even your friends and family may be using plants for ornamental landscaping that could be poison to children and pets if eaten. Learn to identify the castor oil plant with its ornamental and exotic-type leaves of bronze and scarlet and displays of vivid red flowers. Used in some places to produce biodiesel, this one is very poisonous.
Use care in watering plants
Some pesticides and plants foods could be toxic and standing water is an open invitation offering a drink to pets and children. If you have to use pesticides use organic and safe products and check all labels carefully or avoid using them at all especially if there is anyone in the family with breathing problems that could be affected.
The flaming red poinsettia
What is a holiday without that poinsettia with its fiery red leaves sitting in the middle of the dining room table – and now even available in shades of cream, orange, pale green, pink, white, or marbled. Though not highly toxic, these leaves can be irritating to the skin or stomach and may cause diarrhea and vomiting if the leaf is eaten.
Have a happy home and garden and enjoy safe plants!