Plants are very beneficial for us, especially the indoor ones. This is mainly because they cleanse the air, supply oxygen, and simply refresh the home and make it more comfortable for living. However, you need to be careful as there are plants that you shouldn’t keep at home because they are very dangerous.
Therefore, avoid having these plants at home, especially if you have children or pets. If you happen to already have some of these plants, dispose of them right away.
- Water Hemlock
This is the most toxic plant in North America and it is related to poison hemlock-the plant which killed Socrates. It is a large wildflower and people often mix it with celery and parsnips. The root of the plant is filled with deadly cicutoxin which can cause abdominal cramps, painful convulsions, nausea, and even death. People who have survived this toxin experience amnesia and lasting tremors.
- Deadly Nightshade
This plant lures children and adults as it has sweet berries. Its leaves are green and dull and the black berries have the size of cherries. The atropine and scopolamine in its stem leaves, berries, and roots, can cause paralysis of the body muscles, including the heart. Physical contact with it can cause skin irritation.
- White Snakeroot
This plant became known after Abraham Lincoln’s mother, Nancy Hanks, was killed with it. Rich in trematol, a toxic alcohol transferred to people through animal products, this plant can lead to loss of appetite, nausea, abdominal discomfort, acidic blood, and even death.
- Castor Bean
Native to Africa, this plant is usually grown as an ornamental plant because of its attractive looks. Castor oil is produced from processed seeds, but before processing the beans, it contains a poison called ricin which is extremely deadly even in small amounts. Eight seeds can kill an adult, whereas only two or three are enough to kill a child. Ricin prevents the synthesis of proteins within cells and can cause seizures, diarrhea, vomiting, and even death.
- Rosary Pea
The seeds of this plant are filled with abrin, a ribosome inhibiting protein which is extremely deadly. Namely, this plant grows in topical areas and it is used in prayer rosaries and jewelry. Its intact seeds aren’t poisonous, however, the scratched, broken, or chewed ones are. In fact, 3 micrograms are enough to kill an adult.
Known for its beautiful flowers, oleander is actually deadly and contains lethal cardiac glycosides known as neriine and oleandrin. The symptoms of oleander poisoning are diarrhea, vomiting, coma, seizures, and it can even lead to death. If you consume honey from bees that visited this plant, you can become sick.
Tobacco is used for the production of cigars and cigarettes and its leaves can also be chewed. Nonetheless, all parts of the tobacco plant contain nicotine and abanasine, toxic alkaloids, which are fatal when ingested. Although it is a well-known cardiac poison, a lot of people consume nicotine. This is why tobacco is one of the most dangerous plants in the world, with 5 million deaths yearly.
- Angel Trumpet
Native to South America, it contains atropine, hyoscyamine, and scopolamine, potent toxins with mind-altering properties. In the documentary Colombian Devil’s Breath, the makers explain how this plant was used by gang members to make their victims walking zombies. This is because the victims appeared to be unaware of what they were doing, yet they were completely conscious. Moreover, the documentary shows number of other horrifying stories of people who were under the influence of this plant. What’s more, a man, who was exposed to scopolamine powder, helped thieves rob his own apartment and even helped them load the stuff in the truck.
- Spurge Laurel
This plant has potent biocides that can cause blisters and irritation when the plant is cut. When consumed, the berries can cause internal bleeding, organ failure, and death within hours.
- Death Camas
One of the most toxic plants ever, even when ingested in small amounts, it can cause quick death due to organ failure and blood disturbance.