Daffodil Bulb Poison


The daffodil is a plant of the genus narcissus. It has a bulbous root, which means it grows from a bulb planted in the fall and flowers in early springtime. It also called daffofilly or daffy down dilly. It generally has a trumpet-shaped flower with a star-shaped background. Some species have a trumpet that is a different color from the background. There are 13 divisions with at least 50 species and thousands of hybrids.

Daffodil Poisoning

Alkaloids are nitrogen-containing alkaline (meaning a pH greater than 7) chemicals that exist in all plants. They come from amino acids, which are the building blocks of proteins. At least 40 percent of all plant families have plants with these chemicals included. Many plants have different alkaloids, each with a particular purpose. Some are useful as medicines, while others can be harmful or even fatal. The liver processes the alkaloids that enter the body, leaving some harmless while making others more toxic. Daffodils contain the alkaloids galanthamine and lycorine, for which there is no specific antidote.

Animal Poisoning

Dogs eat just about anything, including grass and garden plants. Daffodils can be lethal for dogs. If a dog eats or chews the on the bulbs, leaves or flowers, it can develop the signs of poisoning mentioned below. About a half ounce is enough to cause possible symptoms.


Daffodil poisoning happens if the plant is touched or eaten, most often when someone has mistaken it for an onion bulb. The bulb is the most poisonous part of the plant. The daffodil can cause a number of symptoms, including abdominal pain from mild to severe, allergic dermatitis, contact dermatitis, nausea, dizziness, pain, diarrhea, loss of appetite and vomiting.


If ingested through the mouth, rinse immediately with water and remove any remaining debris. In case identification of the ingested matter is needed later, save a sample to help with treatment. If the skin was exposed, remove any contaminated clothing and wash it immediately with soap and water. If toxins got in the eyes, rinse the eye with warm water for 10 to 15 minutes. If symptoms become severe, seek medical attention right away.


Due to the fact that daffodils are so popular, they are often overlooked as hazardous. It is important to research plants for a garden before planting.

Keywords: Daffodils Poisonous, Poisonous Plants, Animal Poisonous Plants

About this Author

Sheri Engstrom has been writing for 15 years. She is currently a gardening writer for Demand Studios. Engstrom completed the master gardener program at the University of Minnesota Extension service. She is published in their book "The Best Plants for 30 Tough Sites." She is also the online education examiner Minneapolis for Examiner.com.