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Care Guide
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Dieffenbachia
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Dieffenbachia
Dieffenbachia
Dieffenbachia
Dieffenbachia
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Dieffenbachia
Dieffenbachia seguine
Also known as: Poison arum
The focal point of a dieffenbachia is the beautiful look and patterns of the foliage, which are often variegated. This plant has showy white blooms, but only flowers in perfect conditions. Use caution, because the dieffenbachia is poisonous; if the sap is ingested it can cause muteness for up to two weeks by numbing the throat and vocal cords.
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Every week
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Sunlight
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Sunlight
Toxic to Pets
care guide

Care Guide for Dieffenbachia

The dieffenbachia plant should be watered when the top two inches of soil become dry. In general, the soil should be kept very lightly moist at all times throughout the growing season between spring and fall. The leaves of this species will shrivel if it is not watered frequently enough. With adequate water, the leaves will harden and become more resilient.
Fertilization
Fertilization
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The dieffenbachia plant is considered a heavy feeder, so it is advisible to fertilize this species. This plant will grow well with a complete 20-20-20 balanced fertilizer and should be applied every four to six weeks during the active growing season. During dormancy between fall and winter, this species can be fertlized less frequently.
Trim the dead, diseased, overgrown branches in winter.
Potting Suggestions
Potting Suggestions
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Needs excellent drainage in pots.
Sunlight
Sunlight
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Partial sun, Full shade
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Dieffenbachia
Water
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Every week
Sunlight
Sunlight
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Hardiness Zones
Hardiness Zones
10 - 12
Planting Time
Planting Time
Spring, Fall
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Dieffenbachia
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Every week
Sunlight
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Spring, Fall
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Questions About Dieffenbachia

Watering Watering Watering
Pruning Pruning Pruning
Temperature Temperature Temperature
Seasonal Care Seasonal Care Seasonal Care
How Often to Water Dieffenbachia?
The Dieffenbachia is not a species that requires consistent soil moisture. Instead, it is better to allow this plant’s soil to become dry between waterings. If you are like the many gardeners who grow Dieffenbachias in containers, you can judge whether or not it is time to add water by how dry the soil within the container is. For instance, if about top half of the soil in your container has become dry, it is time to add water. You can feel it by inserting your fingers or sticks into the soil or with soil moisture meter. For those who grow the Dieffenbachia outdoors, you can plan to do your watering about once every other week, provided it has not rained recently.
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How Much to Water Dieffenbachia?
After waiting for the first several layers of soil surrounding your Dieffenbachia’s root to become dry(top half of the soil), it is time to add enough water to make them moist again. The amount of water it takes to achieve that goal depends on if you use a container, how large that container is, and how large your plant itself is. For a small Dieffenbachia growing in a small to a medium-sized container, one to two cups may be enough to dampen the soil sufficiently. As you would expect, the volume of water you supply should increase for a larger plant. The best way to make sure your plant has received enough water is to stick your finger or a trowel into the soil and feel whether it is entirely moist. Alternatively, you can water until you see excess water draining from the holes at the bottom of your container.
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What Is the Best Way to Water the Dieffenbachia?
There are plenty of viable ways to supply your Dieffenbachia with water. If you grow your plant in an indoor pot, for the Dieffenbachias in small pots, you can bring your potted plant to your kitchen sink. Then, use the faucet to add water to the container. By holding the pot in your hands, you should easily notice when the water begins to run through the pot’s drainage holes, at which point you can stop watering. The cold temperature will hurt the plants' root system, so please don't do this during winter or in cold climates. Most of the time, watering via your faucet is permissible for the Dieffenbachia. However, if the local tap water contains a high proportion of fluorine, chlorine or salts, you should consider using rainwater or lake water.
Also, since the Dieffenbachia can respond well to overhead watering and watering directly into the soil, you can use a watering can, hose, or just about any tool you’d like to water it.
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How to Know If You Are Watering Dieffenbachia Enough?
Overwatering and underwatering are both bad for the health of your Dieffenbachia. These two issues also manifest themselves in subtly different ways when they occur. Dieffenbachia that receives too little water may begin to develop yellow leaves. Underwatering may also cause the leaf margins to become brown and brittle. By contrast, Dieffenbachia that gets overwatered will often show yellow and brown marks on its leaves at the same time. Overwatering can also lead to diseases like root rot, some of which may also be visible on your plant. However, if you know the signs of overwatering and underwatering, you stand a good chance of correcting both issues.
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What to Do If Your Water Dieffenbachia Too Much or Too Little?
If you discover that you have underwatered your Dieffenbachia, your first step towards remedying the situation is to give your plant some water. Water deeply until excess water runs from the container’s drainage hole, or if you grow outside, water until the soil has become entirely moist. If you find your Dieffenbachia is receiving too much water, begin by reducing your watering schedule. You also want to address the soil and container your Dieffenbachia grows in. If either the soil or the container makes it difficult for water to drain efficiently, your plant will likely become overwatered again. Resolve the issue by moving your plant to looser soils and/or a container with bigger drainage holes or a more porous material. Also check the location of the plant. If the plant is in places like a corner, then it is recommended to move it to a window or around a door to enhance ventilation. Making sure the plants are in a well-ventilated location can reduce the occurrence of overwatering to some extent.
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How to Water Dieffenbachia Through the Seasons?
During spring and fall, your watering schedule for the Dieffenbachia will remain relatively the same, which will involve watering this plant about once every week. During summer, you may find that the hot weather causes your plant to need more water than usual, especially if it grows where there is a considerable amount of daily light exposure. In the winter, if it's hard to find some warm places for you plant, your Dieffenbachia will enter a dormant growth phase, in which it will need far less water than usual. At this time, you may get by without watering your plant at all. If you do choose to water during winter, you should not do so more often than once every two to three weeks.
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How to Water Dieffenbachia at Different Growth Stages?
After planting a new, young Dieffenbachia or after transplanting an older Dieffenbachia, you will probably need to give this plant more water than usual. Young plants often need consistent soil moisture during the early stages of their growth to help them adapt to their new growing locations. Transplants also need more water for a brief time to overcome transplant shock. In either case, you may need to water multiple times per week until your plant has exhibited continuous healthy growth. In most situations, your water should be moderate and should never be significant enough to cause overwatering.
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What'S the Difference between Watering Dieffenbachia Indoors and Outdoors?
There are a few reasons why you may need to water an indoor Dieffenbachia more often than one that grows in the ground outdoors. First, indoor growing settings tend to be drier than outdoor ones, often due to the effect of air conditioning units. While thw size of the pot and the soil determines the warer accumulating ability. Additionally, when your plant grows indoors, it will rely on you entirely for its water By contrast, Dieffenbachia that grows outside can receive water from rain. If you are in an area with high rainfall, you may not have to give it extra watering. When there is not enough rain, you should water additionally to ensure that the soil does not dry out completely.
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pests

Common Pests & Diseases

Common issues for Dieffenbachia based on 10 million real cases
Brown spot
Brown spot Brown spot
Brown spot
This infection can cause brown spots or patches to appear on the plant.
Solutions: In minor cases of brown spot, there isn’t any need to treat the disease. However, if much of the foliage is affected and defoliation occurs, the plant will benefit from getting rid of the infection. It is recommended to start by applying organic treatment options, working up to the more potent synthetic, chemical fungicides if necessary. Organic options won’t kill the fungus, but will prevent it from spreading. Dissolve ½ teaspoon of baking soda and one teaspoon of liquid soap in a gallon of water. Using a spray bottle, spray on tops and bottoms of leaves until the mixture drips off. Repeat every two weeks until existing spots stop enlarging and new spots no longer appear. Spray a copper-based fungicidal soap on the leaves, coating the top and bottom leaf surfaces. Reapply as directed on the product label. Copper penetrates the leaf surface and prevents germination of spores so the fungus cannot spread. Apply an all-purpose fungicide to the entire plant, following the label instructions carefully.
Underwatering
Underwatering Underwatering
Underwatering
Leaves may wilt for a variety of reasons.
Solutions: The easiest (and most obvious) way to address underwatering is to fully hydrate the plant. However, this must be done carefully. A common mistake that many gardeners make is to douse their underwatered plants with water. This can overwhelm the roots of the plant and shock its system, something that can be even more damaging than the lack of water to begin with. Instead, water thoroughly and slowly, taking breaks to let the water slowly saturate through the soil to get to the roots. Use room temperature water, as cold water might be too much of a shock. In the future, shorten the time between waterings. A good rule of thumb is to check the soil around each plant daily. If it’s dry to at least two inches down, it’s time to water. If a container plant is repeatedly drying out very quickly, repotting into a slower-draining container might be a good idea, too.
Aged yellow and dry
Aged yellow and dry Aged yellow and dry
Aged yellow and dry
Natural aging can cause leaves to turn yellow and dry out.
Solutions: If the yellowing and drying of leaves and flowers is a natural progression due to age, nothing can be done to slow or stop the process. Once hormones within the plant begin the process of senescence, it’s irreversible.
Leaf rot
Leaf rot Leaf rot
Leaf rot
This pathogen can cause the leaves to rot.
Solutions: Bacterial infections need to be treated quickly to prevent the spread to neighboring, healthy plants, potentially wiping out large sections of your indoor or outdoor garden. In mild cases: Use sterilized (10% bleach solution) pruning shears or scissors to remove any infected plant parts, making sure to dispose of them off site. Use a copper-based bactericide to treat the unaffected foliage, as well as the soil, and neighboring plants. Follow the manufacturer’s rate and timing directions found on the product label. In severe cases, where more than half the leaves are affected: Remove all of the infected plants from the garden, disposing of them off site. Treat the soil and neighboring plants using a copper-based bactericide. Follow the manufacturer’s rate and timing directions found on the product label.
Leaf tips withering
Leaf tips withering Leaf tips withering
Leaf tips withering
Low air humidity can cause the edges of the leaves to dry out.
Solutions: If your plant has only a few dried tips, complete the following: Increase humidity. Increase the humidity around your plant by misting it with a spray bottle daily. Alternatively, you can use a humidifier. Water plant. If your soil is dry, water until the soil is moist but not damp. Water again when soil dries out. If a large portion of the leaves is suffering from dry tips, complete the following: Prune away affected tissue. Using sharp and clean pruning shears, remove the dried out tips using clean cuts to avoid harming healthy tissue. Plant tissue will heal on its own, but you can apply a pruning seal for extra protection.
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Brown spot
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Brown spot
This infection can cause brown spots or patches to appear on the plant.
Overview
Overview
Discolored spots on the foliage of plants are one of the most common disease problems people observe. These spots are caused by fungal and bacterial diseases, with most infections related to a fungal pathogen.
Brown spot can occurs on all houseplants, flowering ornamentals, vegetable plants, and leaves of trees, bushes, and shrubs. No plants are resistant to it, and the problem is worse in warm, wet environments. It can occur at any point in the life stage as long as leaves are present.
Small brownish spots appear on the foliage and enlarge as the disease progresses. In severe cases, the plant or tree is weakened when the lesions interrupt photosynthesis or cause defoliation.
Symptom Analysis
Symptom Analysis
In most cases, brown spot only affects a small percentage of the whole plant, appearing on a small amount of the leaves. A small infection only puts minor stress on the plant. However, if left untreated and the disease progresses over numerous seasons, it will severely impact the health and productivity of the infected specimen.
  • Sporulation begins (reproduction of the fungal spores), and tiny spots appear on leaves.
  • Placement is often random and scattered as diseases are spread through raindrops.
  • May appear on lower leaves and the interior of the plant where humidity is higher.
  • Brown spots enlarge and grow large enough to touch neighboring spots to form a more prominent blotch.
  • Leaf margins may turn yellow.
  • Tiny black dots (fruiting bodies of the fungi) appear in the dead spots.
  • Blotches grow in size until the entire leaf is brown.
  • The leaf falls off the plant.
Severe Symptoms
  • Partial or complete premature defoliation
  • Reduced growth
  • Increased susceptibility to pests and other diseases
Disease Cause
Disease Cause
Brown spot, or leaf spot, is a common descriptive term given to several diseases affecting the leaves of plants and trees. Around 85% of diseases exhibiting leaf spots are due to fungus or fungus-like organisms. Sometimes brown spot is caused by a bacterial infection, or insect activity with similar symptoms.
When conditions are warm and the leaf surfaces are wet, fungal spores being transported by wind or rain land on the surface and cling to it. They do not rupture the cell walls but grow in the space between the plant plasma membrane and the plant cell wall. As the spores reproduce, they release toxins and enzymes that cause necrotic spots (i.e., dead tissue) on the leaves, allowing the fungi to consume the products released when the cells degrade.
Solutions
Solutions
In minor cases of brown spot, there isn’t any need to treat the disease. However, if much of the foliage is affected and defoliation occurs, the plant will benefit from getting rid of the infection. It is recommended to start by applying organic treatment options, working up to the more potent synthetic, chemical fungicides if necessary.
Organic options won’t kill the fungus, but will prevent it from spreading.
  1. Dissolve ½ teaspoon of baking soda and one teaspoon of liquid soap in a gallon of water. Using a spray bottle, spray on tops and bottoms of leaves until the mixture drips off. Repeat every two weeks until existing spots stop enlarging and new spots no longer appear.
  2. Spray a copper-based fungicidal soap on the leaves, coating the top and bottom leaf surfaces. Reapply as directed on the product label. Copper penetrates the leaf surface and prevents germination of spores so the fungus cannot spread.
  3. Apply an all-purpose fungicide to the entire plant, following the label instructions carefully.
Prevention
Prevention
Like many other diseases, it is easier to prevent brown spot than cure it, and this is done through cultural practices.
  • Clear fall leaves from the ground before winter to minimize places where fungi and bacteria can overwinter.
  • Maintain good air movement between plants through proper plant spacing.
  • Increase air circulation through the center of plants through pruning.
  • Thoroughly clean all pruning tools after working with diseased plants.
  • Never dispose of disease plant material in a compost pile.
  • Avoid overhead watering to keep moisture off of the foliage.
  • Keep plants healthy by providing adequate sunlight, water, and fertilizer.
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Underwatering
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Underwatering
Leaves may wilt for a variety of reasons.
Overview
Overview
Underwatering plants is one of the quickest ways to kill them. This is something that most gardeners are well aware of. Unfortunately, knowing exactly how much water a plant needs can be tricky, especially considering that underwatering and overwatering present similar symptoms in plants.
Therefore, it’s important to be vigilant and attentive to each plants’ individual needs.
Symptom Analysis
Symptom Analysis
As mentioned earlier, overwatering and underwatering present similar symptoms in plants. These symptoms include poor growth, wilted leaves, defoliation, and brown leaf tips or margins. Ultimately, both underwatering and overwatering can lead to the death of a plant.
The easiest way to determine whether a plant has too much water or too little is to look at the leaves. If underwatering is the culprit, the leaves will look brown and crunchy, while if it’s overwatering, they will appear yellow or a pale green in color.
When this issue first begins, there may be no noticeable symptoms at all, particularly in hardy or drought-tolerant plants. However, they will begin to wilt once they start suffering from a lack of water. The edges of the plant’s leaves will become brown or curled. Soil pulling away from the edges of the planter is a telltale sign, or a crispy, brittle stem.
Prolonged underwatering can cause a plant’s growth to become stunted. The leaves might drop and the plant can be more susceptible to pest infestations, too.
Disease Cause
Disease Cause
Underwatering is caused by, quite simply, not watering plants often or deeply enough. There is a heightened risk of underwatering if any of these situations apply:
  • Extreme heat and dry weather (when growing outdoors)
  • Grow lights or indoor lighting that is too bright or intense for the type of plant
  • Using fast-draining growing media such as sand
Solutions
Solutions
The easiest (and most obvious) way to address underwatering is to fully hydrate the plant. However, this must be done carefully. A common mistake that many gardeners make is to douse their underwatered plants with water. This can overwhelm the roots of the plant and shock its system, something that can be even more damaging than the lack of water to begin with.
Instead, water thoroughly and slowly, taking breaks to let the water slowly saturate through the soil to get to the roots. Use room temperature water, as cold water might be too much of a shock.
In the future, shorten the time between waterings. A good rule of thumb is to check the soil around each plant daily. If it’s dry to at least two inches down, it’s time to water. If a container plant is repeatedly drying out very quickly, repotting into a slower-draining container might be a good idea, too.
Prevention
Prevention
Always check the soil before watering. If the top inch of soil feels moist, though not wet, the watering is perfect. If it’s dry, water it immediately. If it feels soggy, you avoid watering until it dries out a bit more.
Also, make sure the lighting is sufficient for the species. Plants grow faster and need more water when there is intense light or lots of heat. Being aware of these conditions and modifying them, if possible, is a good way to prevent underwatering. Many container plants are potted in soil mixtures mean to be well-draining. Adding materials that retain moisture, like compost or peat moss, can also prevent these symptoms.
Other tips to prevent underwatering include:
  • Choose pots with adequately-sized drainage holes
  • Avoid warm temperatures
  • Use large pots with additional soil (these take longer to dry out)
  • Avoid terracotta pots, which lose water quickly
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Aged yellow and dry
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Aged yellow and dry
Natural aging can cause leaves to turn yellow and dry out.
Overview
Overview
Regardless of the type of plant or where it is grown, at some point, it will begin to aged yellow and dry. This is a natural, unavoidable process that happens when the plant has completed all of the steps in its life.
Annual plants go through this process at the end of a single growing season. Perennial plants live for multiple years, if not tens or hundreds of years, but will still ultimately exhibit these symptoms.
Symptom Analysis
Symptom Analysis
When plants have progressed through their natural developmental stages and are nearing the end of their lifecycle, they begin showing signs of decline. Leaves will start to yellow and droop, and over time they turn papery brown and dry.
Once completely dry, the leaves begin to fall from the plant until the entire plant has dried out.
Disease Cause
Disease Cause
At the end of its life, genetic coding within the plant increases the production of ethylene, a phytohormone that controls senescence or natural aging and death. Cell division stops, and the plant begins catabolizing resources to use in other parts of the plant.
As this happens, the tissues begin yellow and drying until the entire plant is desiccated and perishes.
Solutions
Solutions
If the yellowing and drying of leaves and flowers is a natural progression due to age, nothing can be done to slow or stop the process. Once hormones within the plant begin the process of senescence, it’s irreversible.
Prevention
Prevention
Unfortunately, there is no way to prevent plants from dying of “old age.” To help prolong their life, and put off symptoms of aged yellow and dry for as long as possible, take care of them by giving them enough water, fertilizing them appropriately, and making sure they get enough sunlight.
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Leaf rot
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Leaf rot
This pathogen can cause the leaves to rot.
Overview
Overview
Leaf rot is very common among both house plants and garden plants. It affects foliage and occurs mainly when the leaves become wet due to rain or misting by the gardener. The cause is fungal disease and this is facilitated by the fungal spores adhering to wet leaves then penetrating the leaf and expanding rapidly. Damp conditions and poor air circulation will increase chances of infection taking place. Another factor are leaves that are damaged or have been penetrated by sap sucking insects that facilitate plant penetration.
Symptom Analysis
Symptom Analysis
  1. Spores are able to cling to a damp leaf and penetrate, often through an existing wound.
  2. A small dark brown mark appears which expands rapidly as sporulation starts to take place.
  3. Quite quickly these bull's eye like circles can link together and the whole leaf turns dark and loses texture.
  4. Leaf drop occurs.
Disease Cause
Disease Cause
These symptoms are caused by a bacterial infection invading the plant. Bacteria from many sources in the environment (air, water, soil, diseased plants) enter a plant through wounds, or in some cases the stomata when they are open. Once inside the leaf tissue, the bacteria feed and reproduce quickly, breaking down healthy leaves.
Bacterial infections threaten most plant species, and are more prominent in wet weather that more easily transfers the bacteria from plant to plant, or from soil to plant.
Solutions
Solutions
Bacterial infections need to be treated quickly to prevent the spread to neighboring, healthy plants, potentially wiping out large sections of your indoor or outdoor garden.
In mild cases: Use sterilized (10% bleach solution) pruning shears or scissors to remove any infected plant parts, making sure to dispose of them off site. Use a copper-based bactericide to treat the unaffected foliage, as well as the soil, and neighboring plants. Follow the manufacturer’s rate and timing directions found on the product label.
In severe cases, where more than half the leaves are affected: Remove all of the infected plants from the garden, disposing of them off site. Treat the soil and neighboring plants using a copper-based bactericide. Follow the manufacturer’s rate and timing directions found on the product label.
Prevention
Prevention
  1. Clean up garden debris at the end of the season, especially if it contains any diseased plant tissue. Diseases can overwinter from season to season and infect new plants.
  2. Avoid overhead watering to prevent transferring pathogens from one plant to another, and to keep foliage dry.
  3. Mulch around the base of plants to prevent soil-borne bacteria from splashing up onto uninfected plants.
  4. Sterilize cutting tools using a 10% bleach solution when gardening and moving from one plant to another.
  5. Do not work in your garden when it is wet.
  6. Rotate crops to prevent the buildup of bacteria in one site due to continuous cropping.
  7. Use a copper or streptomycin-containing bactericide in early spring to prevent infection. Read label directions carefully as they are not suitable for all plants.
  8. Ensure plants are well spaced and thin leaves on densely leaved plants so that air circulation is maximised.
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Leaf tips withering
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Leaf tips withering
Low air humidity can cause the edges of the leaves to dry out.
Symptom Analysis
Symptom Analysis
The tips and the edges of the plants’ leaves are dried out and brown. They may be crunchy when touched. This is caused by low humidity and/or a lack of water.
Solutions
Solutions
If your plant has only a few dried tips, complete the following:
  1. Increase humidity. Increase the humidity around your plant by misting it with a spray bottle daily. Alternatively, you can use a humidifier.
  2. Water plant. If your soil is dry, water until the soil is moist but not damp. Water again when soil dries out.
If a large portion of the leaves is suffering from dry tips, complete the following:
  1. Prune away affected tissue. Using sharp and clean pruning shears, remove the dried out tips using clean cuts to avoid harming healthy tissue. Plant tissue will heal on its own, but you can apply a pruning seal for extra protection.
Prevention
Prevention
Many houseplants come from moist tropical areas with high humidity.
To prevent dry and brown tips, you should complete the following:
  1. Water regularly. Water when soil is dry.
  2. Keep humidity high. Keep moisture high by regularly misting the air or using a humidifier.
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toxic

Toxicity

Toxic to Dogs
Toxic to Dogs
All parts of the dieffenbachia are moderately toxic to dogs when ingested. Symptoms include burning and swelling of the lips, tongue, and throat due to the sap's needle-like crystals embedding in the tissues. Difficulty swallowing, nausea, vomiting, and diarrhea may also occur; a trip to the vet may be necessary if these symptoms grow more severe, as they are sometimes fatal. Even topical exposure to the sap can cause skin irritation.
Toxic to Cats
Toxic to Cats
Dieffenbachia (Dieffenbachia seguine) is moderately toxic to pets. Chewing any part of the plant will release calcium oxalate crystals that irritate the mouth, causing pain and swelling, and ingestion may cause vomiting. Occasionally the airway will swell as well, rendering it difficult for the cat to breathe. In such cases, veterinary intervention may be necessary.
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Who Is Most at Risk of Plant Poisoning?
Your pets like cats and dogs can be poisoned by them as well!
1
Do not let your lovely pets eat any parts, nor contact with the sap of toxic or unknown plants;
2
It’s better to kill those growing around your house. Wear long-sleeved shirts, pants and gloves with sharp tools to dig it out completely;
3
Clean the tools with rubbing alcohol or soap and water but do not do that with bare hands;
4
Clean your hands and skin once exposed to plants with soap and water;
5
Consider using barrier creams that contain bentoquatam to prevent poison oak, ivy and sumac rashes;
6
Dump it in special trash cans in sealed garbage packages, and do not let your pets reach it;Do not let your lovely pets eat any parts, nor contact with the sap of toxic or unknown plants;
7
If you take your pets to hike with you in the wild, please don’t let them eat any plants that you don’t know;
8
Once your pets eat, touch or inhale anything from toxic plants and act abnormally, please call the doctors for help ASAP!
pets
Pets
Some pets are less likely than children to eat and touch just about everything. This is good, as a pet owner. However, you know your pet best, and it is up to you to keep them safe. There are plenty of poisonous weeds that can grow within the confines of your lawn, which might make your dogs or cats ill or worse if they eat them. Try to have an idea of what toxic plants grow in your area and keep them under control and your pets away from them.
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Common Toxic Houseplants
Common Toxic Houseplants
When it comes to decorating a house, there is nothing more refreshing than adding some beautiful houseplants. Some common house plants can also be toxic.

Aloe

aloe
Aloe is famous for its sunburn-soothing properties and its gorgeous desert design. However, many people do not realize that the latex the aloe vera plant produces can be mildly toxic to pets and children.

The latex contains a chemical compound known as saponin. Which when ingested, can cause vomiting, diarrhea, and low blood sugar. This, if left unchecked, can lead to dehydration and electrolyte imbalance. The proper response is to contact poison control or a veterinarian to know what to do in your particular circumstance if either your child or pet consumes aloe.

The latex of the plant is similar to the sap of the tree. It is inside the leaf, but sticks mainly toward the edges. If aloe gel is prepared properly it should be safe for use, but be sure to apply it only topically when treating burns.

Philodendron

Philodendron
Philodendron, also known as sweetheart vine, has become a resident at many houses and even businesses. They are glossy green and the leaves elegantly split, displaying interesting designs. Behind this beauty there is a needle-like toxin called calcium oxalate crystals.

These crystals are held within the plant and only affect you, your pets, or your loved ones if the plant tissue is broken. If ingested, the crystals can cause severe swelling, difficulty breathing, stomach pain, burning and pain. If they are accidentally caught on the skin, they can cause skin irritation.

If anyone accidentally ingests philodendron and they find it difficult to breathe or their tongue starts to swell up, it is important to seek medical attention immediately to avoid suffocation. If you have very young children or pets who have a tendency to tear at plants, keep them away from any philodendrons.

Peace Lily

Peace Lily
Peace lilies produce stunningly white flowers that bring to mind peace and serenity. This is one reason they are invited into our homes and given a place to stay. However, similar to philodendrons, the peace lily contains oxalate crystals known as raphides.

The raphides, once ingested, will cause swelling and burning sensations and can also cause skin irritation. Both pets and humans can get these symptoms so it is important to keep these plants from anyone who is likely to tear or chew it. Symptoms can become dire if the raphides cause the tongue and throat to swell to a point where the person or pet is having difficulty breathing. Seek proper medical attention if this is the case.

Snake Plant

Snake Plant
The snake plant is an interesting and popular house plant. Its stark architecture and wavy coloring has made it a fan favorite. This plant too, however, is toxic when ingested or if the sap touches your skin.

Snake plant sap will cause rashes if it comes into contact with your skin. In addition, it will cause diarrhea and vomiting when ingested. Again these symptoms are very serious and would be best avoided by keeping snake plants out of reach or by choosing a different houseplant.
Common Toxic Garden Plants
Common Toxic Garden Plants

Daffodil

Daffodil
Daffodils are a strikingly colorful flower. This can sometimes bring them much attention not from just onlooking adults but children as well. Since kids are more drawn to colorful objects, they may have a higher chance of just grabbing the flower and eating it. Adults have also been known to accidentally grab daffodil bulbs instead of onions.

Why are these mistakes so dangerous? Daffodils contain lycorine, which can induce nausea, vomiting, and diarrhea. It also contains oxalates which can cause swelling and pain. The symptoms can be worse in animals, because if your pets eat daffodils they may experience drowsiness, low blood pressure or even liver damage.

Make sure to call poison control when these symptoms set in. The vomiting and diarrhea have been known to go away after 3 hours, but it is better to be safe than sorry. Ingesting liquids to keep hydration up can be important. If the patient is having difficulty breathing, seek medical attention immediately.

Hydrangea

Hydrangea
Hydrangeas are unique, with their soft blue and pink flowers. They are a great addition to any garden, but should not be snacked on—not that you would want to. Hydrangeas can be especially nasty because they contain compounds known as glycosides. These will release hydrogen cyanide into the bloodstream when consumed. This will block your body’s ability to uptake oxygen to the cells in your body.

The way to combat this kind of poisoning is through getting IVs from the vet or doctor. It is important to contact your medical professional immediately since the symptoms can be fatal within minutes or hours.

Rhododendrons

Rhododendrons
Rhododendron, the state flower of Washington, is also toxic. The multitudinous, pink flowers can be quite dangerous. All parts of this plant are toxic, the leaves and seeds more so than the flowers. However, even the nectar of the flower is toxic and in the Mediterranean, where rhododendrons grow in more dense quantities, the honey from bees who gather rhododendron nectar can be poisonous.

Normally kids and pets do not eat enough to experience the full poisoning effect. However, just eating two leaves is enough to be considered dangerous. The grayanotoxin glycosides within the rhododendron can cause vomiting, diarrhea and irregular heartbeats. Things can get very serious when too much rhododendron is consumed and can lead to necessary medical intervention.

Start by calling poison control first if you suspect anyone has been munching on rhododendrons. The experts there will be able to help guide you through the necessary processes to cure your loved one.

Rhubarb

Rhubarb
Yummy rhubarb has a nasty side to it. While the stems are used in many recipes, including for rhubarb strawberry pie, the leaves are toxic. They contain oxalic acid which is known to blister the mouth, cause nausea, vomiting, diarrhea and kidney stones. The leaves are known to be more toxic to pets than humans, but in either case, it is important to contact poison control immediately to figure out necessary steps to cure the patient.
Common Toxic Weeds in the Yard
Common Toxic Weeds in the Yard

Bittersweet Nightshade

Bittersweet Nightshade
Nightshade is an invasive, noxious weed that is extremely poisonous. It has been found along the East and West Coast of the U.S. It makes its home in areas with disturbed soil. This could be near your garden or areas that have recently had bushes/trees put in.

These plants are dark green with purple flowers that develop into bright red berries. The whole plant is toxic and should be avoided by pets and children alike. If ingested it can cause nausea, vomiting, and diarrhea. The colorful berries are especially enticing to young children. If you see any plants that look similar to tomato or pepper plants that you did not plant in your yard, it is best to just pull them immediately.

Call poison control immediately if you think someone has fallen victim to nightshade.

Buttercups

Buttercups
Buttercups are found throughout the United States, especially in wet areas. The shiny, yellow flowers will pop up in the springtime, accompanying their dandelion friends. However, unlike dandelions, buttercups are not edible.

Buttercups will release a compound called protoanemonin. This toxin is known to cause vomiting, diarrhea, bloody stool, hypersalivation, depression, blisters, and more. These symptoms will affect both humans and animals. The sap may also cause irritation when it comes into contact with skin. These yellow flowers are dangerous and children should be observed cautiously when around them.

Foxgloves

Foxgloves
Foxgloves are beautiful plants that build towers out of vivid purple bell-shaped blossoms. They are very pretty to look at, but they contain a compound known as digoxin. This chemical is used in certain medicines to help people with certain heart conditions. However, the medicine is made by specialists, whereas someone eating foxgloves will receive unregulated amounts of the chemical.

This toxin can make you vomit and lower your heartbeat. This often causes dizziness and faintness. It is extremely important to call poison control immediately to know what to do in the case of foxglove poisoning. Some people have confused the young leaves of foxglove with borage, making adult foragers at risk as well as kids and pets.
How to Tend to or Get Rid of Toxic Plants
How to Tend to or Get Rid of Toxic Plants
Now that you know where to start with toxic plant identification, let us discuss how to either tend to the poisonous plants you decide to keep or get rid of them that plague your yard.

How to Tend to Poisonous Plants

Many plants that are toxic when ingested are also skin irritants. The philodendron is a good example of this. When the sap comes into contact with skin, it can cause a rash to form. To help protect yourself when tending to toxic plants, it is important to wear some sort of gloves.
Tend
Latex gloves may be the best solution due to their disposability. Regular gloves could potentially keep the poisonous sap on their surface. If the gloves aren’t cleaned then you could accidentally touch the irritant or pass it to someone else.

In addition you will want to plan where to keep your deadly beauties. If you have a toxic indoor plant try to keep it up high or out of reach of children and pets. This will keep accidents few and far between. Another idea is keeping your plants in areas that are usually inaccessible to children or pets. Areas such as an office, study room, or guest bedroom could be good locations. If applicable, you could also set up a terrarium for your little plant baby, making it more difficult for curious hands or paws to access.
tend2
If you plan to have outdoor plants, location will be key. You will want to put plants in an area that will be inaccessible to children, pets and even wild animals. You will probably want to avoid planting the plants in the front of your house if kids walk by on a regular basis, just to be cautious. Having the plants behind a fence will be best, but use your discretion when choosing a spot.

How to Get Rid of Poisonous Plants

plants
The easiest but possibly most controversial way to get rid of poisonous plants is by using herbicides. This can be especially easy if you own a grass lawn and use an herbicide that targets broadleaf (non-grass) species. You can find many herbicides meant for yard use by simply searching the term online. Once you have purchased the herbicide you will want to make sure to follow the label posted on the container. If you follow the instructions precisely, then everything should run smoothly for you.

If you don’t plan on using herbicides, there are a few organic methods you can use to try to get rid of toxic plants. You can manually pull the plants out of the ground. This is probably one of the most difficult methods because there is no assurance that you will get the whole plant out this way.

You can also try pouring boiling hot water or spraying white vinegar on the target plants. This may take more time than using a synthetic herbicide, but you can feel a little better about using these products.

You can also try to use wood chips to cover a certain area where you do not want anything to grow. This will not stop all the weeds, but the few that make it through can be easily picked by hand.
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Learn more about how to prevent toxic plants for your loved ones.
Who Is Most at Risk of Plant Poisoning?
Everyone should keep the following in mind to prevent being poisoned:
1
Do not eat any parts, nor contact with the sap of toxic or unknown plants;
2
If you need to kill it, wear long-sleeved shirts, pants and gloves with sharp tools to dig it out completely;
3
Clean the tools with rubbing alcohol or soap and water but do not do that with bare hands;
4
Clean your hands and skin once exposed to plants with soap and water;
5
Consider using barrier creams that contain bentoquatam to prevent poison oak, ivy and sumac rashes;
6
Dump it in special trash cans in sealed garbage packages;
7
Wear properly when you hiking or working in the wilderness. Long pants, long sleeves, gloves, hiking shoes, etc., that protect you from being hurt by any plants;
8
Once you or your family aren’t feeling well after eating, touching or inhaling anything from toxic plants, please call your doctor for help ASAP!
Outdoor Workers
Outdoor Workers and Recreationalists
Those who enjoy the outdoors either as a hobby or as part of their work will rarely see a plant and decide to munch on it (although the scenario is not unheard of). However, they do tend to deal with moving through and brushing aside plants. These people are more at risk of being poisoned by touching toxic plants than by ingesting them.
Outdoor Workers
Foragers
Foragers
Foraging for food and medicinal plants is a desirable skill among people who want to feel at one with the land. This hobby can be very useful and enjoyable, but if done wrong , it can lead to disastrous effects. People who forage are picking and grabbing plants with the full intention of using those plants, most of the time to ingest them.
Foragers
Children
Children
While outdoor workers are more likely to touch poison and foragers are more likely to ingest poison, children can easily do both. These bundles of joy just love to run around and explore the world. They enjoy touching things and occasionally shoving random stuff in their mouth; this is a terrible combination with toxic plants in the mix.
If you let your children run about, it is important to know what are the local toxic plants that they could accidentally get into. Try to educate the children and steer them away from where the toxic plants are located.
Children
Common Toxic Houseplants
Common Toxic Houseplants
When it comes to decorating a house, there is nothing more refreshing than adding some beautiful houseplants. Some common house plants can also be toxic.

Aloe

aloe
Aloe is famous for its sunburn-soothing properties and its gorgeous desert design. However, many people do not realize that the latex the aloe vera plant produces can be mildly toxic to pets and children.

The latex contains a chemical compound known as saponin. Which when ingested, can cause vomiting, diarrhea, and low blood sugar. This, if left unchecked, can lead to dehydration and electrolyte imbalance. The proper response is to contact poison control or a veterinarian to know what to do in your particular circumstance if either your child or pet consumes aloe.

The latex of the plant is similar to the sap of the tree. It is inside the leaf, but sticks mainly toward the edges. If aloe gel is prepared properly it should be safe for use, but be sure to apply it only topically when treating burns.

Philodendron

Philodendron
Philodendron, also known as sweetheart vine, has become a resident at many houses and even businesses. They are glossy green and the leaves elegantly split, displaying interesting designs. Behind this beauty there is a needle-like toxin called calcium oxalate crystals.

These crystals are held within the plant and only affect you, your pets, or your loved ones if the plant tissue is broken. If ingested, the crystals can cause severe swelling, difficulty breathing, stomach pain, burning and pain. If they are accidentally caught on the skin, they can cause skin irritation.

If anyone accidentally ingests philodendron and they find it difficult to breathe or their tongue starts to swell up, it is important to seek medical attention immediately to avoid suffocation. If you have very young children or pets who have a tendency to tear at plants, keep them away from any philodendrons.

Peace Lily

Peace Lily
Peace lilies produce stunningly white flowers that bring to mind peace and serenity. This is one reason they are invited into our homes and given a place to stay. However, similar to philodendrons, the peace lily contains oxalate crystals known as raphides.

The raphides, once ingested, will cause swelling and burning sensations and can also cause skin irritation. Both pets and humans can get these symptoms so it is important to keep these plants from anyone who is likely to tear or chew it. Symptoms can become dire if the raphides cause the tongue and throat to swell to a point where the person or pet is having difficulty breathing. Seek proper medical attention if this is the case.

Snake Plant

Snake Plant
The snake plant is an interesting and popular house plant. Its stark architecture and wavy coloring has made it a fan favorite. This plant too, however, is toxic when ingested or if the sap touches your skin.

Snake plant sap will cause rashes if it comes into contact with your skin. In addition, it will cause diarrhea and vomiting when ingested. Again these symptoms are very serious and would be best avoided by keeping snake plants out of reach or by choosing a different houseplant.
Common Toxic Garden Plants
Common Toxic Garden Plants

Daffodil

Daffodil
Daffodils are a strikingly colorful flower. This can sometimes bring them much attention not from just onlooking adults but children as well. Since kids are more drawn to colorful objects, they may have a higher chance of just grabbing the flower and eating it. Adults have also been known to accidentally grab daffodil bulbs instead of onions.

Why are these mistakes so dangerous? Daffodils contain lycorine, which can induce nausea, vomiting, and diarrhea. It also contains oxalates which can cause swelling and pain. The symptoms can be worse in animals, because if your pets eat daffodils they may experience drowsiness, low blood pressure or even liver damage.

Make sure to call poison control when these symptoms set in. The vomiting and diarrhea have been known to go away after 3 hours, but it is better to be safe than sorry. Ingesting liquids to keep hydration up can be important. If the patient is having difficulty breathing, seek medical attention immediately.

Hydrangea

Hydrangea
Hydrangeas are unique, with their soft blue and pink flowers. They are a great addition to any garden, but should not be snacked on—not that you would want to. Hydrangeas can be especially nasty because they contain compounds known as glycosides. These will release hydrogen cyanide into the bloodstream when consumed. This will block your body’s ability to uptake oxygen to the cells in your body.

The way to combat this kind of poisoning is through getting IVs from the vet or doctor. It is important to contact your medical professional immediately since the symptoms can be fatal within minutes or hours.

Rhododendrons

Rhododendrons
Rhododendron, the state flower of Washington, is also toxic. The multitudinous, pink flowers can be quite dangerous. All parts of this plant are toxic, the leaves and seeds more so than the flowers. However, even the nectar of the flower is toxic and in the Mediterranean, where rhododendrons grow in more dense quantities, the honey from bees who gather rhododendron nectar can be poisonous.

Normally kids and pets do not eat enough to experience the full poisoning effect. However, just eating two leaves is enough to be considered dangerous. The grayanotoxin glycosides within the rhododendron can cause vomiting, diarrhea and irregular heartbeats. Things can get very serious when too much rhododendron is consumed and can lead to necessary medical intervention.

Start by calling poison control first if you suspect anyone has been munching on rhododendrons. The experts there will be able to help guide you through the necessary processes to cure your loved one.

Rhubarb

Rhubarb
Yummy rhubarb has a nasty side to it. While the stems are used in many recipes, including for rhubarb strawberry pie, the leaves are toxic. They contain oxalic acid which is known to blister the mouth, cause nausea, vomiting, diarrhea and kidney stones. The leaves are known to be more toxic to pets than humans, but in either case, it is important to contact poison control immediately to figure out necessary steps to cure the patient.
Common Toxic Weeds in the Yard
Common Toxic Weeds in the Yard

Bittersweet Nightshade

Bittersweet Nightshade
Nightshade is an invasive, noxious weed that is extremely poisonous. It has been found along the East and West Coast of the U.S. It makes its home in areas with disturbed soil. This could be near your garden or areas that have recently had bushes/trees put in.

These plants are dark green with purple flowers that develop into bright red berries. The whole plant is toxic and should be avoided by pets and children alike. If ingested it can cause nausea, vomiting, and diarrhea. The colorful berries are especially enticing to young children. If you see any plants that look similar to tomato or pepper plants that you did not plant in your yard, it is best to just pull them immediately.

Call poison control immediately if you think someone has fallen victim to nightshade.

Buttercups

Buttercups
Buttercups are found throughout the United States, especially in wet areas. The shiny, yellow flowers will pop up in the springtime, accompanying their dandelion friends. However, unlike dandelions, buttercups are not edible.

Buttercups will release a compound called protoanemonin. This toxin is known to cause vomiting, diarrhea, bloody stool, hypersalivation, depression, blisters, and more. These symptoms will affect both humans and animals. The sap may also cause irritation when it comes into contact with skin. These yellow flowers are dangerous and children should be observed cautiously when around them.

Foxgloves

Foxgloves
Foxgloves are beautiful plants that build towers out of vivid purple bell-shaped blossoms. They are very pretty to look at, but they contain a compound known as digoxin. This chemical is used in certain medicines to help people with certain heart conditions. However, the medicine is made by specialists, whereas someone eating foxgloves will receive unregulated amounts of the chemical.

This toxin can make you vomit and lower your heartbeat. This often causes dizziness and faintness. It is extremely important to call poison control immediately to know what to do in the case of foxglove poisoning. Some people have confused the young leaves of foxglove with borage, making adult foragers at risk as well as kids and pets.
How to Tend to or Get Rid of Toxic Plants
How to Tend to or Get Rid of Toxic Plants
Now that you know where to start with toxic plant identification, let us discuss how to either tend to the poisonous plants you decide to keep or get rid of them that plague your yard.

How to Tend to Poisonous Plants

Many plants that are toxic when ingested are also skin irritants. The philodendron is a good example of this. When the sap comes into contact with skin, it can cause a rash to form. To help protect yourself when tending to toxic plants, it is important to wear some sort of gloves.
Tend
Latex gloves may be the best solution due to their disposability. Regular gloves could potentially keep the poisonous sap on their surface. If the gloves aren’t cleaned then you could accidentally touch the irritant or pass it to someone else.

In addition you will want to plan where to keep your deadly beauties. If you have a toxic indoor plant try to keep it up high or out of reach of children and pets. This will keep accidents few and far between. Another idea is keeping your plants in areas that are usually inaccessible to children or pets. Areas such as an office, study room, or guest bedroom could be good locations. If applicable, you could also set up a terrarium for your little plant baby, making it more difficult for curious hands or paws to access.
tend2
If you plan to have outdoor plants, location will be key. You will want to put plants in an area that will be inaccessible to children, pets and even wild animals. You will probably want to avoid planting the plants in the front of your house if kids walk by on a regular basis, just to be cautious. Having the plants behind a fence will be best, but use your discretion when choosing a spot.

How to Get Rid of Poisonous Plants

plants
The easiest but possibly most controversial way to get rid of poisonous plants is by using herbicides. This can be especially easy if you own a grass lawn and use an herbicide that targets broadleaf (non-grass) species. You can find many herbicides meant for yard use by simply searching the term online. Once you have purchased the herbicide you will want to make sure to follow the label posted on the container. If you follow the instructions precisely, then everything should run smoothly for you.

If you don’t plan on using herbicides, there are a few organic methods you can use to try to get rid of toxic plants. You can manually pull the plants out of the ground. This is probably one of the most difficult methods because there is no assurance that you will get the whole plant out this way.

You can also try pouring boiling hot water or spraying white vinegar on the target plants. This may take more time than using a synthetic herbicide, but you can feel a little better about using these products.

You can also try to use wood chips to cover a certain area where you do not want anything to grow. This will not stop all the weeds, but the few that make it through can be easily picked by hand.
Show More
more
Become a premium member to read the full content!
Learn more about how to prevent toxic plants for your loved ones.
distribution

Distribution Map

Habitat

Edge of a wetland slough, trail up mountain, mature forest
distribution map
Native
Cultivated
Invasive
Potentially invasive
Exotic
No species reported
habit
plant_info

More Info

Plant Type
Plant Type
Herb
Flower Color
Flower Color
Green
White
Yellow
Bloom Time
Bloom Time
Spring, Summer, Fall
Leaf Color
Leaf Color
Green
Yellow
White
Variegated

Symbolism

protection from negativity

Usages

Garden Use
Dieffenbachia is a common ornamental perennial grown as a house plant. The lovely variegated leaves are its most prized feature, giving a boost of color and interest to what otherwise may be an uninteresting area of the house. Dieffenbachia is perfect for those who don't have access to an outside garden and want an easy-to-care-for plant to bring indoors. Houseplants that require similar growing conditions, such as the spider plant, will be great companions.
other_plant

Related Plants

Sweet william
Sweet william
There are two thoughts on the origin of the sweet william name. The first is that is was named after the Duke of Cumberland, William Augustus. The second is that the name came from the writings of Thomas Tusser, an English poet. In either case, this old-fashioned garden plant is a lovely addition to any space.
Toxic to
Dogs
Zebra plant
Zebra plant
Zebra plant (Aphelandra squarrosa) is a flowering plant species that is often cultivated as a houseplant. This species grows best in bright sunlight and high humidity. Zebra plant soil should be kept moist without overwatering for best results indoors.
False shamrock
False shamrock
False shamrock (Oxalis triangularis) is a native lobed perennial plant that grows throughout South America. The three-leaved shape gives this plant its name, but the leaves are also remarkable for their purple color. This color makes the false shamrock a popular ornamental plant for hanging baskets. This plant is edible but should be consumed only in small amounts due to the presence of oxalic acid.
Toxic to
Humans
Cats
Dogs
Cherry plum
Cherry plum
Cherry plum ( Prunus cerasifera ) is a deciduous small tree or a shrub native to Southern Europe and Western Asia. It is one of the most common wild fruits of its native region, producing numerous, rounded, yellow, red, or burgundy-colored, sweet, juicy fruit in summer and autumn. Cherry plum is also used as an ornamental tree, and as rootstock for other Prunus species.
Toxic to
Cats
Dogs
Siberian lily
Siberian lily
The siberian lily (Lilium pensylvanicum) is a flowering plant native to Siberia, Mongolia, Korea, northeastern China, and Hokkaido in Japan. The original Latin name Lilium pensylvanicum by botanist John Bellenden Ker is misleading. Siberian lily is considered easy to grow. It is sensitive to drought conditions.
Toxic to
Cats
Angel's trumpet
Angel's trumpet
Angel's trumpet is a showy and unique addition to any garden and is prized for its flowers which have a trumpet shape and a variety of colors including yellow, orange, white, pink, or red. Use extreme caution, however, as all parts of angel's trumpet are poisonous when ingested.
Toxic to
Humans
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Dieffenbachia
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Common Pests & Diseases

Common issues for Dieffenbachia based on 10 million real cases
Brown spot
Brown spot  Brown spot  Brown spot
This infection can cause brown spots or patches to appear on the plant.
Solutions: In minor cases of brown spot, there isn’t any need to treat the disease. However, if much of the foliage is affected and defoliation occurs, the plant will benefit from getting rid of the infection. It is recommended to start by applying organic treatment options, working up to the more potent synthetic, chemical fungicides if necessary. Organic options won’t kill the fungus, but will prevent it from spreading. Dissolve ½ teaspoon of baking soda and one teaspoon of liquid soap in a gallon of water. Using a spray bottle, spray on tops and bottoms of leaves until the mixture drips off. Repeat every two weeks until existing spots stop enlarging and new spots no longer appear. Spray a copper-based fungicidal soap on the leaves, coating the top and bottom leaf surfaces. Reapply as directed on the product label. Copper penetrates the leaf surface and prevents germination of spores so the fungus cannot spread. Apply an all-purpose fungicide to the entire plant, following the label instructions carefully.
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Underwatering
Underwatering  Underwatering  Underwatering
Leaves may wilt for a variety of reasons.
Solutions: The easiest (and most obvious) way to address underwatering is to fully hydrate the plant. However, this must be done carefully. A common mistake that many gardeners make is to douse their underwatered plants with water. This can overwhelm the roots of the plant and shock its system, something that can be even more damaging than the lack of water to begin with. Instead, water thoroughly and slowly, taking breaks to let the water slowly saturate through the soil to get to the roots. Use room temperature water, as cold water might be too much of a shock. In the future, shorten the time between waterings. A good rule of thumb is to check the soil around each plant daily. If it’s dry to at least two inches down, it’s time to water. If a container plant is repeatedly drying out very quickly, repotting into a slower-draining container might be a good idea, too.
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Aged yellow and dry
Aged yellow and dry  Aged yellow and dry  Aged yellow and dry
Natural aging can cause leaves to turn yellow and dry out.
Solutions: If the yellowing and drying of leaves and flowers is a natural progression due to age, nothing can be done to slow or stop the process. Once hormones within the plant begin the process of senescence, it’s irreversible.
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Leaf rot
Leaf rot  Leaf rot  Leaf rot
This pathogen can cause the leaves to rot.
Solutions: Bacterial infections need to be treated quickly to prevent the spread to neighboring, healthy plants, potentially wiping out large sections of your indoor or outdoor garden. In mild cases: Use sterilized (10% bleach solution) pruning shears or scissors to remove any infected plant parts, making sure to dispose of them off site. Use a copper-based bactericide to treat the unaffected foliage, as well as the soil, and neighboring plants. Follow the manufacturer’s rate and timing directions found on the product label. In severe cases, where more than half the leaves are affected: Remove all of the infected plants from the garden, disposing of them off site. Treat the soil and neighboring plants using a copper-based bactericide. Follow the manufacturer’s rate and timing directions found on the product label.
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Leaf tips withering
Leaf tips withering  Leaf tips withering  Leaf tips withering
Low air humidity can cause the edges of the leaves to dry out.
Solutions: If your plant has only a few dried tips, complete the following: Increase humidity. Increase the humidity around your plant by misting it with a spray bottle daily. Alternatively, you can use a humidifier. Water plant. If your soil is dry, water until the soil is moist but not damp. Water again when soil dries out. If a large portion of the leaves is suffering from dry tips, complete the following: Prune away affected tissue. Using sharp and clean pruning shears, remove the dried out tips using clean cuts to avoid harming healthy tissue. Plant tissue will heal on its own, but you can apply a pruning seal for extra protection.
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Brown spot
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Brown spot
This infection can cause brown spots or patches to appear on the plant.
Overview
Overview
Discolored spots on the foliage of plants are one of the most common disease problems people observe. These spots are caused by fungal and bacterial diseases, with most infections related to a fungal pathogen.
Brown spot can occurs on all houseplants, flowering ornamentals, vegetable plants, and leaves of trees, bushes, and shrubs. No plants are resistant to it, and the problem is worse in warm, wet environments. It can occur at any point in the life stage as long as leaves are present.
Small brownish spots appear on the foliage and enlarge as the disease progresses. In severe cases, the plant or tree is weakened when the lesions interrupt photosynthesis or cause defoliation.
Symptom Analysis
Symptom Analysis
In most cases, brown spot only affects a small percentage of the whole plant, appearing on a small amount of the leaves. A small infection only puts minor stress on the plant. However, if left untreated and the disease progresses over numerous seasons, it will severely impact the health and productivity of the infected specimen.
  • Sporulation begins (reproduction of the fungal spores), and tiny spots appear on leaves.
  • Placement is often random and scattered as diseases are spread through raindrops.
  • May appear on lower leaves and the interior of the plant where humidity is higher.
  • Brown spots enlarge and grow large enough to touch neighboring spots to form a more prominent blotch.
  • Leaf margins may turn yellow.
  • Tiny black dots (fruiting bodies of the fungi) appear in the dead spots.
  • Blotches grow in size until the entire leaf is brown.
  • The leaf falls off the plant.
Severe Symptoms
  • Partial or complete premature defoliation
  • Reduced growth
  • Increased susceptibility to pests and other diseases
Disease Cause
Disease Cause
Brown spot, or leaf spot, is a common descriptive term given to several diseases affecting the leaves of plants and trees. Around 85% of diseases exhibiting leaf spots are due to fungus or fungus-like organisms. Sometimes brown spot is caused by a bacterial infection, or insect activity with similar symptoms.
When conditions are warm and the leaf surfaces are wet, fungal spores being transported by wind or rain land on the surface and cling to it. They do not rupture the cell walls but grow in the space between the plant plasma membrane and the plant cell wall. As the spores reproduce, they release toxins and enzymes that cause necrotic spots (i.e., dead tissue) on the leaves, allowing the fungi to consume the products released when the cells degrade.
Solutions
Solutions
In minor cases of brown spot, there isn’t any need to treat the disease. However, if much of the foliage is affected and defoliation occurs, the plant will benefit from getting rid of the infection. It is recommended to start by applying organic treatment options, working up to the more potent synthetic, chemical fungicides if necessary.
Organic options won’t kill the fungus, but will prevent it from spreading.
  1. Dissolve ½ teaspoon of baking soda and one teaspoon of liquid soap in a gallon of water. Using a spray bottle, spray on tops and bottoms of leaves until the mixture drips off. Repeat every two weeks until existing spots stop enlarging and new spots no longer appear.
  2. Spray a copper-based fungicidal soap on the leaves, coating the top and bottom leaf surfaces. Reapply as directed on the product label. Copper penetrates the leaf surface and prevents germination of spores so the fungus cannot spread.
  3. Apply an all-purpose fungicide to the entire plant, following the label instructions carefully.
Prevention
Prevention
Like many other diseases, it is easier to prevent brown spot than cure it, and this is done through cultural practices.
  • Clear fall leaves from the ground before winter to minimize places where fungi and bacteria can overwinter.
  • Maintain good air movement between plants through proper plant spacing.
  • Increase air circulation through the center of plants through pruning.
  • Thoroughly clean all pruning tools after working with diseased plants.
  • Never dispose of disease plant material in a compost pile.
  • Avoid overhead watering to keep moisture off of the foliage.
  • Keep plants healthy by providing adequate sunlight, water, and fertilizer.
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Underwatering
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Underwatering
Leaves may wilt for a variety of reasons.
Overview
Overview
Underwatering plants is one of the quickest ways to kill them. This is something that most gardeners are well aware of. Unfortunately, knowing exactly how much water a plant needs can be tricky, especially considering that underwatering and overwatering present similar symptoms in plants.
Therefore, it’s important to be vigilant and attentive to each plants’ individual needs.
Symptom Analysis
Symptom Analysis
As mentioned earlier, overwatering and underwatering present similar symptoms in plants. These symptoms include poor growth, wilted leaves, defoliation, and brown leaf tips or margins. Ultimately, both underwatering and overwatering can lead to the death of a plant.
The easiest way to determine whether a plant has too much water or too little is to look at the leaves. If underwatering is the culprit, the leaves will look brown and crunchy, while if it’s overwatering, they will appear yellow or a pale green in color.
When this issue first begins, there may be no noticeable symptoms at all, particularly in hardy or drought-tolerant plants. However, they will begin to wilt once they start suffering from a lack of water. The edges of the plant’s leaves will become brown or curled. Soil pulling away from the edges of the planter is a telltale sign, or a crispy, brittle stem.
Prolonged underwatering can cause a plant’s growth to become stunted. The leaves might drop and the plant can be more susceptible to pest infestations, too.
Disease Cause
Disease Cause
Underwatering is caused by, quite simply, not watering plants often or deeply enough. There is a heightened risk of underwatering if any of these situations apply:
  • Extreme heat and dry weather (when growing outdoors)
  • Grow lights or indoor lighting that is too bright or intense for the type of plant
  • Using fast-draining growing media such as sand
Solutions
Solutions
The easiest (and most obvious) way to address underwatering is to fully hydrate the plant. However, this must be done carefully. A common mistake that many gardeners make is to douse their underwatered plants with water. This can overwhelm the roots of the plant and shock its system, something that can be even more damaging than the lack of water to begin with.
Instead, water thoroughly and slowly, taking breaks to let the water slowly saturate through the soil to get to the roots. Use room temperature water, as cold water might be too much of a shock.
In the future, shorten the time between waterings. A good rule of thumb is to check the soil around each plant daily. If it’s dry to at least two inches down, it’s time to water. If a container plant is repeatedly drying out very quickly, repotting into a slower-draining container might be a good idea, too.
Prevention
Prevention
Always check the soil before watering. If the top inch of soil feels moist, though not wet, the watering is perfect. If it’s dry, water it immediately. If it feels soggy, you avoid watering until it dries out a bit more.
Also, make sure the lighting is sufficient for the species. Plants grow faster and need more water when there is intense light or lots of heat. Being aware of these conditions and modifying them, if possible, is a good way to prevent underwatering. Many container plants are potted in soil mixtures mean to be well-draining. Adding materials that retain moisture, like compost or peat moss, can also prevent these symptoms.
Other tips to prevent underwatering include:
  • Choose pots with adequately-sized drainage holes
  • Avoid warm temperatures
  • Use large pots with additional soil (these take longer to dry out)
  • Avoid terracotta pots, which lose water quickly
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Aged yellow and dry
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Aged yellow and dry
Natural aging can cause leaves to turn yellow and dry out.
Overview
Overview
Regardless of the type of plant or where it is grown, at some point, it will begin to aged yellow and dry. This is a natural, unavoidable process that happens when the plant has completed all of the steps in its life.
Annual plants go through this process at the end of a single growing season. Perennial plants live for multiple years, if not tens or hundreds of years, but will still ultimately exhibit these symptoms.
Symptom Analysis
Symptom Analysis
When plants have progressed through their natural developmental stages and are nearing the end of their lifecycle, they begin showing signs of decline. Leaves will start to yellow and droop, and over time they turn papery brown and dry.
Once completely dry, the leaves begin to fall from the plant until the entire plant has dried out.
Disease Cause
Disease Cause
At the end of its life, genetic coding within the plant increases the production of ethylene, a phytohormone that controls senescence or natural aging and death. Cell division stops, and the plant begins catabolizing resources to use in other parts of the plant.
As this happens, the tissues begin yellow and drying until the entire plant is desiccated and perishes.
Solutions
Solutions
If the yellowing and drying of leaves and flowers is a natural progression due to age, nothing can be done to slow or stop the process. Once hormones within the plant begin the process of senescence, it’s irreversible.
Prevention
Prevention
Unfortunately, there is no way to prevent plants from dying of “old age.” To help prolong their life, and put off symptoms of aged yellow and dry for as long as possible, take care of them by giving them enough water, fertilizing them appropriately, and making sure they get enough sunlight.
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Leaf rot
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Leaf rot
This pathogen can cause the leaves to rot.
Overview
Overview
Leaf rot is very common among both house plants and garden plants. It affects foliage and occurs mainly when the leaves become wet due to rain or misting by the gardener. The cause is fungal disease and this is facilitated by the fungal spores adhering to wet leaves then penetrating the leaf and expanding rapidly. Damp conditions and poor air circulation will increase chances of infection taking place. Another factor are leaves that are damaged or have been penetrated by sap sucking insects that facilitate plant penetration.
Symptom Analysis
Symptom Analysis
  1. Spores are able to cling to a damp leaf and penetrate, often through an existing wound.
  2. A small dark brown mark appears which expands rapidly as sporulation starts to take place.
  3. Quite quickly these bull's eye like circles can link together and the whole leaf turns dark and loses texture.
  4. Leaf drop occurs.
Disease Cause
Disease Cause
These symptoms are caused by a bacterial infection invading the plant. Bacteria from many sources in the environment (air, water, soil, diseased plants) enter a plant through wounds, or in some cases the stomata when they are open. Once inside the leaf tissue, the bacteria feed and reproduce quickly, breaking down healthy leaves.
Bacterial infections threaten most plant species, and are more prominent in wet weather that more easily transfers the bacteria from plant to plant, or from soil to plant.
Solutions
Solutions
Bacterial infections need to be treated quickly to prevent the spread to neighboring, healthy plants, potentially wiping out large sections of your indoor or outdoor garden.
In mild cases: Use sterilized (10% bleach solution) pruning shears or scissors to remove any infected plant parts, making sure to dispose of them off site. Use a copper-based bactericide to treat the unaffected foliage, as well as the soil, and neighboring plants. Follow the manufacturer’s rate and timing directions found on the product label.
In severe cases, where more than half the leaves are affected: Remove all of the infected plants from the garden, disposing of them off site. Treat the soil and neighboring plants using a copper-based bactericide. Follow the manufacturer’s rate and timing directions found on the product label.
Prevention
Prevention
  1. Clean up garden debris at the end of the season, especially if it contains any diseased plant tissue. Diseases can overwinter from season to season and infect new plants.
  2. Avoid overhead watering to prevent transferring pathogens from one plant to another, and to keep foliage dry.
  3. Mulch around the base of plants to prevent soil-borne bacteria from splashing up onto uninfected plants.
  4. Sterilize cutting tools using a 10% bleach solution when gardening and moving from one plant to another.
  5. Do not work in your garden when it is wet.
  6. Rotate crops to prevent the buildup of bacteria in one site due to continuous cropping.
  7. Use a copper or streptomycin-containing bactericide in early spring to prevent infection. Read label directions carefully as they are not suitable for all plants.
  8. Ensure plants are well spaced and thin leaves on densely leaved plants so that air circulation is maximised.
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Leaf tips withering
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Leaf tips withering
Low air humidity can cause the edges of the leaves to dry out.
Symptom Analysis
Symptom Analysis
The tips and the edges of the plants’ leaves are dried out and brown. They may be crunchy when touched. This is caused by low humidity and/or a lack of water.
Solutions
Solutions
If your plant has only a few dried tips, complete the following:
  1. Increase humidity. Increase the humidity around your plant by misting it with a spray bottle daily. Alternatively, you can use a humidifier.
  2. Water plant. If your soil is dry, water until the soil is moist but not damp. Water again when soil dries out.
If a large portion of the leaves is suffering from dry tips, complete the following:
  1. Prune away affected tissue. Using sharp and clean pruning shears, remove the dried out tips using clean cuts to avoid harming healthy tissue. Plant tissue will heal on its own, but you can apply a pruning seal for extra protection.
Prevention
Prevention
Many houseplants come from moist tropical areas with high humidity.
To prevent dry and brown tips, you should complete the following:
  1. Water regularly. Water when soil is dry.
  2. Keep humidity high. Keep moisture high by regularly misting the air or using a humidifier.
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toxic

Toxicity

Toxic to Dogs
Toxic to Dogs
Toxic to Cats
Toxic to Cats
* The judgment on toxicity and danger is for reference only. We DO NOT GUARANTEE any accuracy of such judgment. Therefore, you SHALL NOT rely on such judgment. It is IMPORTANT TO SEEK PROFESSIONAL ADVICE in advance when necessary.
All parts of the dieffenbachia are moderately toxic to dogs when ingested. Symptoms include burning and swelling of the lips, tongue, and throat due to the sap's needle-like crystals embedding in the tissues. Difficulty swallowing, nausea, vomiting, and diarrhea may also occur; a trip to the vet may be necessary if these symptoms grow more severe, as they are sometimes fatal. Even topical exposure to the sap can cause skin irritation.
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Who Is Most at Risk of Plant Poisoning?
Your pets like cats and dogs can be poisoned by them as well!
1
Do not let your lovely pets eat any parts, nor contact with the sap of toxic or unknown plants;
2
It’s better to kill those growing around your house. Wear long-sleeved shirts, pants and gloves with sharp tools to dig it out completely;
3
Clean the tools with rubbing alcohol or soap and water but do not do that with bare hands;
4
Clean your hands and skin once exposed to plants with soap and water;
5
Consider using barrier creams that contain bentoquatam to prevent poison oak, ivy and sumac rashes;
6
Dump it in special trash cans in sealed garbage packages, and do not let your pets reach it;Do not let your lovely pets eat any parts, nor contact with the sap of toxic or unknown plants;
7
If you take your pets to hike with you in the wild, please don’t let them eat any plants that you don’t know;
8
Once your pets eat, touch or inhale anything from toxic plants and act abnormally, please call the doctors for help ASAP!
pets
Pets
Some pets are less likely than children to eat and touch just about everything. This is good, as a pet owner. However, you know your pet best, and it is up to you to keep them safe. There are plenty of poisonous weeds that can grow within the confines of your lawn, which might make your dogs or cats ill or worse if they eat them. Try to have an idea of what toxic plants grow in your area and keep them under control and your pets away from them.
pets
Common Toxic Houseplants
Common Toxic Houseplants
When it comes to decorating a house, there is nothing more refreshing than adding some beautiful houseplants. Some common house plants can also be toxic.

Aloe

aloe
Aloe is famous for its sunburn-soothing properties and its gorgeous desert design. However, many people do not realize that the latex the aloe vera plant produces can be mildly toxic to pets and children.

The latex contains a chemical compound known as saponin. Which when ingested, can cause vomiting, diarrhea, and low blood sugar. This, if left unchecked, can lead to dehydration and electrolyte imbalance. The proper response is to contact poison control or a veterinarian to know what to do in your particular circumstance if either your child or pet consumes aloe.

The latex of the plant is similar to the sap of the tree. It is inside the leaf, but sticks mainly toward the edges. If aloe gel is prepared properly it should be safe for use, but be sure to apply it only topically when treating burns.

Philodendron

Philodendron
Philodendron, also known as sweetheart vine, has become a resident at many houses and even businesses. They are glossy green and the leaves elegantly split, displaying interesting designs. Behind this beauty there is a needle-like toxin called calcium oxalate crystals.

These crystals are held within the plant and only affect you, your pets, or your loved ones if the plant tissue is broken. If ingested, the crystals can cause severe swelling, difficulty breathing, stomach pain, burning and pain. If they are accidentally caught on the skin, they can cause skin irritation.

If anyone accidentally ingests philodendron and they find it difficult to breathe or their tongue starts to swell up, it is important to seek medical attention immediately to avoid suffocation. If you have very young children or pets who have a tendency to tear at plants, keep them away from any philodendrons.

Peace Lily

Peace Lily
Peace lilies produce stunningly white flowers that bring to mind peace and serenity. This is one reason they are invited into our homes and given a place to stay. However, similar to philodendrons, the peace lily contains oxalate crystals known as raphides.

The raphides, once ingested, will cause swelling and burning sensations and can also cause skin irritation. Both pets and humans can get these symptoms so it is important to keep these plants from anyone who is likely to tear or chew it. Symptoms can become dire if the raphides cause the tongue and throat to swell to a point where the person or pet is having difficulty breathing. Seek proper medical attention if this is the case.

Snake Plant

Snake Plant
The snake plant is an interesting and popular house plant. Its stark architecture and wavy coloring has made it a fan favorite. This plant too, however, is toxic when ingested or if the sap touches your skin.

Snake plant sap will cause rashes if it comes into contact with your skin. In addition, it will cause diarrhea and vomiting when ingested. Again these symptoms are very serious and would be best avoided by keeping snake plants out of reach or by choosing a different houseplant.
Common Toxic Garden Plants
Common Toxic Garden Plants

Daffodil

Daffodil
Daffodils are a strikingly colorful flower. This can sometimes bring them much attention not from just onlooking adults but children as well. Since kids are more drawn to colorful objects, they may have a higher chance of just grabbing the flower and eating it. Adults have also been known to accidentally grab daffodil bulbs instead of onions.

Why are these mistakes so dangerous? Daffodils contain lycorine, which can induce nausea, vomiting, and diarrhea. It also contains oxalates which can cause swelling and pain. The symptoms can be worse in animals, because if your pets eat daffodils they may experience drowsiness, low blood pressure or even liver damage.

Make sure to call poison control when these symptoms set in. The vomiting and diarrhea have been known to go away after 3 hours, but it is better to be safe than sorry. Ingesting liquids to keep hydration up can be important. If the patient is having difficulty breathing, seek medical attention immediately.

Hydrangea

Hydrangea
Hydrangeas are unique, with their soft blue and pink flowers. They are a great addition to any garden, but should not be snacked on—not that you would want to. Hydrangeas can be especially nasty because they contain compounds known as glycosides. These will release hydrogen cyanide into the bloodstream when consumed. This will block your body’s ability to uptake oxygen to the cells in your body.

The way to combat this kind of poisoning is through getting IVs from the vet or doctor. It is important to contact your medical professional immediately since the symptoms can be fatal within minutes or hours.

Rhododendrons

Rhododendrons
Rhododendron, the state flower of Washington, is also toxic. The multitudinous, pink flowers can be quite dangerous. All parts of this plant are toxic, the leaves and seeds more so than the flowers. However, even the nectar of the flower is toxic and in the Mediterranean, where rhododendrons grow in more dense quantities, the honey from bees who gather rhododendron nectar can be poisonous.

Normally kids and pets do not eat enough to experience the full poisoning effect. However, just eating two leaves is enough to be considered dangerous. The grayanotoxin glycosides within the rhododendron can cause vomiting, diarrhea and irregular heartbeats. Things can get very serious when too much rhododendron is consumed and can lead to necessary medical intervention.

Start by calling poison control first if you suspect anyone has been munching on rhododendrons. The experts there will be able to help guide you through the necessary processes to cure your loved one.

Rhubarb

Rhubarb
Yummy rhubarb has a nasty side to it. While the stems are used in many recipes, including for rhubarb strawberry pie, the leaves are toxic. They contain oxalic acid which is known to blister the mouth, cause nausea, vomiting, diarrhea and kidney stones. The leaves are known to be more toxic to pets than humans, but in either case, it is important to contact poison control immediately to figure out necessary steps to cure the patient.
Common Toxic Weeds in the Yard
Common Toxic Weeds in the Yard

Bittersweet Nightshade

Bittersweet Nightshade
Nightshade is an invasive, noxious weed that is extremely poisonous. It has been found along the East and West Coast of the U.S. It makes its home in areas with disturbed soil. This could be near your garden or areas that have recently had bushes/trees put in.

These plants are dark green with purple flowers that develop into bright red berries. The whole plant is toxic and should be avoided by pets and children alike. If ingested it can cause nausea, vomiting, and diarrhea. The colorful berries are especially enticing to young children. If you see any plants that look similar to tomato or pepper plants that you did not plant in your yard, it is best to just pull them immediately.

Call poison control immediately if you think someone has fallen victim to nightshade.

Buttercups

Buttercups
Buttercups are found throughout the United States, especially in wet areas. The shiny, yellow flowers will pop up in the springtime, accompanying their dandelion friends. However, unlike dandelions, buttercups are not edible.

Buttercups will release a compound called protoanemonin. This toxin is known to cause vomiting, diarrhea, bloody stool, hypersalivation, depression, blisters, and more. These symptoms will affect both humans and animals. The sap may also cause irritation when it comes into contact with skin. These yellow flowers are dangerous and children should be observed cautiously when around them.

Foxgloves

Foxgloves
Foxgloves are beautiful plants that build towers out of vivid purple bell-shaped blossoms. They are very pretty to look at, but they contain a compound known as digoxin. This chemical is used in certain medicines to help people with certain heart conditions. However, the medicine is made by specialists, whereas someone eating foxgloves will receive unregulated amounts of the chemical.

This toxin can make you vomit and lower your heartbeat. This often causes dizziness and faintness. It is extremely important to call poison control immediately to know what to do in the case of foxglove poisoning. Some people have confused the young leaves of foxglove with borage, making adult foragers at risk as well as kids and pets.
How to Tend to or Get Rid of Toxic Plants
How to Tend to or Get Rid of Toxic Plants
Now that you know where to start with toxic plant identification, let us discuss how to either tend to the poisonous plants you decide to keep or get rid of them that plague your yard.

How to Tend to Poisonous Plants

Many plants that are toxic when ingested are also skin irritants. The philodendron is a good example of this. When the sap comes into contact with skin, it can cause a rash to form. To help protect yourself when tending to toxic plants, it is important to wear some sort of gloves.
Tend
Latex gloves may be the best solution due to their disposability. Regular gloves could potentially keep the poisonous sap on their surface. If the gloves aren’t cleaned then you could accidentally touch the irritant or pass it to someone else.

In addition you will want to plan where to keep your deadly beauties. If you have a toxic indoor plant try to keep it up high or out of reach of children and pets. This will keep accidents few and far between. Another idea is keeping your plants in areas that are usually inaccessible to children or pets. Areas such as an office, study room, or guest bedroom could be good locations. If applicable, you could also set up a terrarium for your little plant baby, making it more difficult for curious hands or paws to access.
tend2
If you plan to have outdoor plants, location will be key. You will want to put plants in an area that will be inaccessible to children, pets and even wild animals. You will probably want to avoid planting the plants in the front of your house if kids walk by on a regular basis, just to be cautious. Having the plants behind a fence will be best, but use your discretion when choosing a spot.

How to Get Rid of Poisonous Plants

plants
The easiest but possibly most controversial way to get rid of poisonous plants is by using herbicides. This can be especially easy if you own a grass lawn and use an herbicide that targets broadleaf (non-grass) species. You can find many herbicides meant for yard use by simply searching the term online. Once you have purchased the herbicide you will want to make sure to follow the label posted on the container. If you follow the instructions precisely, then everything should run smoothly for you.

If you don’t plan on using herbicides, there are a few organic methods you can use to try to get rid of toxic plants. You can manually pull the plants out of the ground. This is probably one of the most difficult methods because there is no assurance that you will get the whole plant out this way.

You can also try pouring boiling hot water or spraying white vinegar on the target plants. This may take more time than using a synthetic herbicide, but you can feel a little better about using these products.

You can also try to use wood chips to cover a certain area where you do not want anything to grow. This will not stop all the weeds, but the few that make it through can be easily picked by hand.
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Who Is Most at Risk of Plant Poisoning?
Everyone should keep the following in mind to prevent being poisoned:
1
Do not eat any parts, nor contact with the sap of toxic or unknown plants;
2
If you need to kill it, wear long-sleeved shirts, pants and gloves with sharp tools to dig it out completely;
3
Clean the tools with rubbing alcohol or soap and water but do not do that with bare hands;
4
Clean your hands and skin once exposed to plants with soap and water;
5
Consider using barrier creams that contain bentoquatam to prevent poison oak, ivy and sumac rashes;
6
Dump it in special trash cans in sealed garbage packages;
7
Wear properly when you hiking or working in the wilderness. Long pants, long sleeves, gloves, hiking shoes, etc., that protect you from being hurt by any plants;
8
Once you or your family aren’t feeling well after eating, touching or inhaling anything from toxic plants, please call your doctor for help ASAP!
Outdoor Workers
Outdoor Workers and Recreationalists
Those who enjoy the outdoors either as a hobby or as part of their work will rarely see a plant and decide to munch on it (although the scenario is not unheard of). However, they do tend to deal with moving through and brushing aside plants. These people are more at risk of being poisoned by touching toxic plants than by ingesting them.
Outdoor Workers
Foragers
Foragers
Foraging for food and medicinal plants is a desirable skill among people who want to feel at one with the land. This hobby can be very useful and enjoyable, but if done wrong , it can lead to disastrous effects. People who forage are picking and grabbing plants with the full intention of using those plants, most of the time to ingest them.
Foragers
Children
Children
While outdoor workers are more likely to touch poison and foragers are more likely to ingest poison, children can easily do both. These bundles of joy just love to run around and explore the world. They enjoy touching things and occasionally shoving random stuff in their mouth; this is a terrible combination with toxic plants in the mix.
If you let your children run about, it is important to know what are the local toxic plants that they could accidentally get into. Try to educate the children and steer them away from where the toxic plants are located.
Children
Common Toxic Houseplants
Common Toxic Houseplants
When it comes to decorating a house, there is nothing more refreshing than adding some beautiful houseplants. Some common house plants can also be toxic.

Aloe

aloe
Aloe is famous for its sunburn-soothing properties and its gorgeous desert design. However, many people do not realize that the latex the aloe vera plant produces can be mildly toxic to pets and children.

The latex contains a chemical compound known as saponin. Which when ingested, can cause vomiting, diarrhea, and low blood sugar. This, if left unchecked, can lead to dehydration and electrolyte imbalance. The proper response is to contact poison control or a veterinarian to know what to do in your particular circumstance if either your child or pet consumes aloe.

The latex of the plant is similar to the sap of the tree. It is inside the leaf, but sticks mainly toward the edges. If aloe gel is prepared properly it should be safe for use, but be sure to apply it only topically when treating burns.

Philodendron

Philodendron
Philodendron, also known as sweetheart vine, has become a resident at many houses and even businesses. They are glossy green and the leaves elegantly split, displaying interesting designs. Behind this beauty there is a needle-like toxin called calcium oxalate crystals.

These crystals are held within the plant and only affect you, your pets, or your loved ones if the plant tissue is broken. If ingested, the crystals can cause severe swelling, difficulty breathing, stomach pain, burning and pain. If they are accidentally caught on the skin, they can cause skin irritation.

If anyone accidentally ingests philodendron and they find it difficult to breathe or their tongue starts to swell up, it is important to seek medical attention immediately to avoid suffocation. If you have very young children or pets who have a tendency to tear at plants, keep them away from any philodendrons.

Peace Lily

Peace Lily
Peace lilies produce stunningly white flowers that bring to mind peace and serenity. This is one reason they are invited into our homes and given a place to stay. However, similar to philodendrons, the peace lily contains oxalate crystals known as raphides.

The raphides, once ingested, will cause swelling and burning sensations and can also cause skin irritation. Both pets and humans can get these symptoms so it is important to keep these plants from anyone who is likely to tear or chew it. Symptoms can become dire if the raphides cause the tongue and throat to swell to a point where the person or pet is having difficulty breathing. Seek proper medical attention if this is the case.

Snake Plant

Snake Plant
The snake plant is an interesting and popular house plant. Its stark architecture and wavy coloring has made it a fan favorite. This plant too, however, is toxic when ingested or if the sap touches your skin.

Snake plant sap will cause rashes if it comes into contact with your skin. In addition, it will cause diarrhea and vomiting when ingested. Again these symptoms are very serious and would be best avoided by keeping snake plants out of reach or by choosing a different houseplant.
Common Toxic Garden Plants
Common Toxic Garden Plants

Daffodil

Daffodil
Daffodils are a strikingly colorful flower. This can sometimes bring them much attention not from just onlooking adults but children as well. Since kids are more drawn to colorful objects, they may have a higher chance of just grabbing the flower and eating it. Adults have also been known to accidentally grab daffodil bulbs instead of onions.

Why are these mistakes so dangerous? Daffodils contain lycorine, which can induce nausea, vomiting, and diarrhea. It also contains oxalates which can cause swelling and pain. The symptoms can be worse in animals, because if your pets eat daffodils they may experience drowsiness, low blood pressure or even liver damage.

Make sure to call poison control when these symptoms set in. The vomiting and diarrhea have been known to go away after 3 hours, but it is better to be safe than sorry. Ingesting liquids to keep hydration up can be important. If the patient is having difficulty breathing, seek medical attention immediately.

Hydrangea

Hydrangea
Hydrangeas are unique, with their soft blue and pink flowers. They are a great addition to any garden, but should not be snacked on—not that you would want to. Hydrangeas can be especially nasty because they contain compounds known as glycosides. These will release hydrogen cyanide into the bloodstream when consumed. This will block your body’s ability to uptake oxygen to the cells in your body.

The way to combat this kind of poisoning is through getting IVs from the vet or doctor. It is important to contact your medical professional immediately since the symptoms can be fatal within minutes or hours.

Rhododendrons

Rhododendrons
Rhododendron, the state flower of Washington, is also toxic. The multitudinous, pink flowers can be quite dangerous. All parts of this plant are toxic, the leaves and seeds more so than the flowers. However, even the nectar of the flower is toxic and in the Mediterranean, where rhododendrons grow in more dense quantities, the honey from bees who gather rhododendron nectar can be poisonous.

Normally kids and pets do not eat enough to experience the full poisoning effect. However, just eating two leaves is enough to be considered dangerous. The grayanotoxin glycosides within the rhododendron can cause vomiting, diarrhea and irregular heartbeats. Things can get very serious when too much rhododendron is consumed and can lead to necessary medical intervention.

Start by calling poison control first if you suspect anyone has been munching on rhododendrons. The experts there will be able to help guide you through the necessary processes to cure your loved one.

Rhubarb

Rhubarb
Yummy rhubarb has a nasty side to it. While the stems are used in many recipes, including for rhubarb strawberry pie, the leaves are toxic. They contain oxalic acid which is known to blister the mouth, cause nausea, vomiting, diarrhea and kidney stones. The leaves are known to be more toxic to pets than humans, but in either case, it is important to contact poison control immediately to figure out necessary steps to cure the patient.
Common Toxic Weeds in the Yard
Common Toxic Weeds in the Yard

Bittersweet Nightshade

Bittersweet Nightshade
Nightshade is an invasive, noxious weed that is extremely poisonous. It has been found along the East and West Coast of the U.S. It makes its home in areas with disturbed soil. This could be near your garden or areas that have recently had bushes/trees put in.

These plants are dark green with purple flowers that develop into bright red berries. The whole plant is toxic and should be avoided by pets and children alike. If ingested it can cause nausea, vomiting, and diarrhea. The colorful berries are especially enticing to young children. If you see any plants that look similar to tomato or pepper plants that you did not plant in your yard, it is best to just pull them immediately.

Call poison control immediately if you think someone has fallen victim to nightshade.

Buttercups

Buttercups
Buttercups are found throughout the United States, especially in wet areas. The shiny, yellow flowers will pop up in the springtime, accompanying their dandelion friends. However, unlike dandelions, buttercups are not edible.

Buttercups will release a compound called protoanemonin. This toxin is known to cause vomiting, diarrhea, bloody stool, hypersalivation, depression, blisters, and more. These symptoms will affect both humans and animals. The sap may also cause irritation when it comes into contact with skin. These yellow flowers are dangerous and children should be observed cautiously when around them.

Foxgloves

Foxgloves
Foxgloves are beautiful plants that build towers out of vivid purple bell-shaped blossoms. They are very pretty to look at, but they contain a compound known as digoxin. This chemical is used in certain medicines to help people with certain heart conditions. However, the medicine is made by specialists, whereas someone eating foxgloves will receive unregulated amounts of the chemical.

This toxin can make you vomit and lower your heartbeat. This often causes dizziness and faintness. It is extremely important to call poison control immediately to know what to do in the case of foxglove poisoning. Some people have confused the young leaves of foxglove with borage, making adult foragers at risk as well as kids and pets.
How to Tend to or Get Rid of Toxic Plants
How to Tend to or Get Rid of Toxic Plants
Now that you know where to start with toxic plant identification, let us discuss how to either tend to the poisonous plants you decide to keep or get rid of them that plague your yard.

How to Tend to Poisonous Plants

Many plants that are toxic when ingested are also skin irritants. The philodendron is a good example of this. When the sap comes into contact with skin, it can cause a rash to form. To help protect yourself when tending to toxic plants, it is important to wear some sort of gloves.
Tend
Latex gloves may be the best solution due to their disposability. Regular gloves could potentially keep the poisonous sap on their surface. If the gloves aren’t cleaned then you could accidentally touch the irritant or pass it to someone else.

In addition you will want to plan where to keep your deadly beauties. If you have a toxic indoor plant try to keep it up high or out of reach of children and pets. This will keep accidents few and far between. Another idea is keeping your plants in areas that are usually inaccessible to children or pets. Areas such as an office, study room, or guest bedroom could be good locations. If applicable, you could also set up a terrarium for your little plant baby, making it more difficult for curious hands or paws to access.
tend2
If you plan to have outdoor plants, location will be key. You will want to put plants in an area that will be inaccessible to children, pets and even wild animals. You will probably want to avoid planting the plants in the front of your house if kids walk by on a regular basis, just to be cautious. Having the plants behind a fence will be best, but use your discretion when choosing a spot.

How to Get Rid of Poisonous Plants

plants
The easiest but possibly most controversial way to get rid of poisonous plants is by using herbicides. This can be especially easy if you own a grass lawn and use an herbicide that targets broadleaf (non-grass) species. You can find many herbicides meant for yard use by simply searching the term online. Once you have purchased the herbicide you will want to make sure to follow the label posted on the container. If you follow the instructions precisely, then everything should run smoothly for you.

If you don’t plan on using herbicides, there are a few organic methods you can use to try to get rid of toxic plants. You can manually pull the plants out of the ground. This is probably one of the most difficult methods because there is no assurance that you will get the whole plant out this way.

You can also try pouring boiling hot water or spraying white vinegar on the target plants. This may take more time than using a synthetic herbicide, but you can feel a little better about using these products.

You can also try to use wood chips to cover a certain area where you do not want anything to grow. This will not stop all the weeds, but the few that make it through can be easily picked by hand.
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distribution

Distribution Map

Habitat

Edge of a wetland slough, trail up mountain, mature forest

Map

distribution map
Native
Cultivated
Invasive
Potentially invasive
Exotic
No species reported
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More Info

Plant Type
Plant Type
Herb
Flower Color
Flower Color
Green
White
Yellow
Bloom Time
Bloom Time
Spring, Summer, Fall
Leaf Color
Leaf Color
Green
Yellow
White
Variegated

Symbolism

protection from negativity

Usages

Garden Use
Dieffenbachia is a common ornamental perennial grown as a house plant. The lovely variegated leaves are its most prized feature, giving a boost of color and interest to what otherwise may be an uninteresting area of the house. Dieffenbachia is perfect for those who don't have access to an outside garden and want an easy-to-care-for plant to bring indoors. Houseplants that require similar growing conditions, such as the spider plant, will be great companions.
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