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Common Poisonous Plants in Florida

ivy`s srooms image by bluefern from

Several poisonous plants exist in Florida. The plants, depending on the type, produce different allergic reactions. Some cause rashes when touched, while others cause vomiting and diarrhea if ingested. Most poisonous plants are used in landscaping or as houseplants. If you have children or pets and have any of these poisonous plants, keep the plants out of their reach.

Peace Lily

peace lily image by Ronnie Howard from

The peace lily, a plant common to Florida landscaping and often used as a Florida houseplant, contains oxalate crystals in the stems and leaves. The oxalate crystals cause immediate pain when bitten into and chewed. Symptoms of the poison include burning in your mouth, on your lips and in your throat. Vomiting may also occur if the plant is ingested.

Lily of the Valley

Some plants are not only poisonous when swallowed, but their smoke is also poisonous to inhale. Forest fires are common in Florida, and the burning of these plants, including lily of the valley, causes serious lung damage. If you inhale the smoke from lily of the valley, you may experience the following symptoms: stomach cramps, nausea, vomiting, low blood pressure, dizziness, seizures and a slow pulse. If you cannot get away from the smoke, there is the possibility of lung damage, due to the allergic reaction and irritation from the toxins in the smoke.

Autumn Crocus

The autumn crocus, a Florida plant, causes several symptoms when ingested, including shock, fever, multiple organ failure, vomiting and diarrhea. In multiple organ failure, your liver and kidneys may fail, and you may experience respiratory failure.

Common Lantana

Plants that produce berries are common in Florida landscaping. Eating the unripe berries of the common lantana may cause blurry vision, dilated pupils, weakness, vomiting, dizziness, shallow breathing and flushed skin.


The sap of the croton, popular in Florida because it is drought and heat-tolerant, may cause skin irritation if touched. If the plant is eaten, you may experience vomiting, nausea and diarrhea.

Brazilian Pepper

The oils from the Brazilian pepper, a poisonous Florida plant, may cause a blistering rash. The smoke from the burning plants should be avoided, as should plants in bloom, as either may cause breathing difficulty and wheezing.

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