Top 5 Dangerous Plants


Plants come in all shapes and sizes, can often produce delicious fruit, and the prettier ones look lovely as home decorations, but there are also some plants out there that can MESS YOU UP! Check out our Top 5 Dangerous Plants list to learn about several plants that can cause you a great deal of discomfort and even DEATH if you ingest them!

1) Castor Oil Plant (Ricinus communis)

Castor Oil Plant
  • Seeds contain an incredibly toxic chemical called ricin
  • Lethal dose is considered to be in the range of 4 to 8 seeds
  • Castor oil plants can be found in houses & gardens all over the world
  • Guinness Book of World Records holder for world's most poisonous plant
  • Ingestion can lead to burning sensations in the mouth & throat, intense abdominal pain, & bloody diarrhea, and can lead to death within 3-5 days

2) The Suicide Tree (Cerbera odollam)

The Suicide Tree - Cerbera odollam
  • Can lead to an irregular heartbeat that can be fatal
  • Seeds of the Suicide Tree contain a toxin called cerberin
  • Used by more people to commit suicide & murder than any other plant
  • Potent compound capable of disrupting calcium ion channels in the heart
  • More than 500 cases of fatal Cerbera poisoning between 1989 and 1999 have been recorded in the Indian state of Kerala alone

3) Manchineel (Hippomane mancinella)

Manchineel - Hippomane mancinella
  • Also known as "The little apple of death"
  • The tree's white sap is a severe skin irritant
  • Standing under this tree in a rainstorm will blister your skin
  • Ingesting the fruit is often fatal on account of its physostignmine content
  • Can lead to complications involving nausea, vomiting, diarrhea, and seizures

4) Dumbcane (Dieffenbachia)

Dumbcane - Dieffenbachia
  • Widely cultivated as an ornamental, especially as a house plant
  • If consumed, oral irritation, excessive drooling, & swelling can occur
  • Called the Mother in Law plant. Can cause a temporary inability to speak
  • Dumbcane plant is being studied as a potential for the treatment of cancer
  • In rare cases irritation becomes so severe that the tongue, mouth, & throat are effectively immobilized, while tissues become so swollen that the airways are blocked, leading to death

5) Rosary Pea (Abrus precatorius)

Rosary Pea - Abrus precatorius
  • Also known as Jequirity or Crab's Eye
  • Used by native Indonesians in musical instruments
  • The abrin content of one seed is said to be fatal to humans
  • The seeds are highly poisonous on account of their abrin content
  • Sabotages your body's functions at the cellular level by inactivating ribosomes

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