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Cultivating Your City

A blog exploring interesting and unique growing systems and trends in urban areas!

Keep your pets safe! – Toxic Holiday Houseplants

Posted by Veronica Shaughnessy -

Happy December readers! This month I will be brief. While many of us get rather busy during the holiday season it is important that we keep a few things in mind when it comes to our furry family members. Many of the holiday plants or plant materials typically used for decorative purposes in the home are poisonous to our pets and should be kept out of reach! Plants to watch out for include but are not limited to:

House Plants

  • Amaryllis ( Hippeastrum sp. )
  • Mistletoe (Viscum album )( Berries)
  • Poinsettia ( Euphorbia pulcherrima )( leaves, stems, and flowers)
  • Peace Lily ( Spathiphyllum sp.)

Greenery (Shrubs; trees )

  • Boxwood (Buxus sp.)
  • Christmas Berry (Heteromeles arbutifolia )( Leaves)
  • Norfolk Island Pine (Araucaria heterophylla)
  • Yew (Taxus sp. )( Bark, leaves, and seeds)

Common Signs and Symptoms

Some Common Signs and Symptoms Include (but are not limited to):

  • Appetite loss
  • Depression
  • Diarrhea
  • Difficulty swallowing
  • Excessive drooling
  • Hyper salivation
  • Oral irritation
  • Seizures
  • Tremors
  • Vomiting

Don't worry folks, it isn't all bad news. You can still have your Christmas Cacti (Schlumbergera bridgesii)!

If your pet consumes any of these plants, call an animal poison control hotline and/or your local vet right away!

More detailed info can be found at:


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