Chemicals From This Plant Can Be Hazardous 

The Oleander is a popular plant found in Utah and all around the southwest. It is also poisonous to humans and pets. This is what WebMD says about the chemicals found in this popular bush: 

Oleander (Nerium oleander) is a flowering shrub. It contains chemicals called toxic cardiac glycosides, which can lead to death when consumed. 

For this reason, some homeowner associations do not allow the plant to be put in yards. This one banned the plant as they have horses in the area and they do not want them eating the plant unawares. 

Do Oleanders get a bad rap? 

The number of poisonings from the Oleander plant are pretty rare. There was a tragic case where two toddlers died from ingesting the toxins in Los Angeles in 2000. The children had picked and ate the leaves and passed away that night. 

Photo by Svetlana B on Unsplash
Photo by Svetlana B on Unsplash

This article from the Las Vegas Review-Journal says Oleanders get a bad rap as the leaves are so bitter that animals and people won't eat them and that most of the poisonings come from people who ingest it on purpose. They say the plant is beneficial in creating a barrier like along freeways. 

Should You Plant Oleanders? 

There are rules where you can plant them in St. George which includes agricultural zones and certain open spaces. If you don’t have any restrictions, it can be a nice plant, especially when the flowers blossom. 

Read More: Grow This Plant If You Need To Survive In Utah

Take care when trimming it. You will want to wear gloves and a long sleeve shirt as the toxins can get through the skin. If you are worried about children or pets getting into it, remove it from high traffic areas.  

LOOK: Here Are 30 Foods That Are Poisonous to Dogs

To prepare yourself for a potential incident, always keep your vet's phone number handy, along with an after-hours clinic you can call in an emergency. The ASPCA Animal Poison Control Center also has a hotline you can call at (888) 426-4435 for advice.

Even with all of these resources, however, the best cure for food poisoning is preventing it in the first place. To give you an idea of what human foods can be dangerous, Stacker has put together a slideshow of 30 common foods to avoid. Take a look to see if there are any that surprise you.

Gallery Credit: Rachel Cavanaugh

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