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Holly Tree- Toxic to Infants? [Archive] - Arbor Day Forum

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michboddy
05-03-2006, 08:43 PM
Our nextdoor neighbor has a holly tree with leaves and berrries at ground level. Are these in anyway toxic to young toddlers? We rent and our landlord isnt very coopertative. We've already trimed and fenced off an oleander tree. My other question is .... Is a plum tree or magnolia tree any concern in regards to children.

saccharum
05-03-2006, 09:31 PM
It might depend on which holly you have, but American holly (Ilex opaca) and at least some others have toxic berries, causing vomiting and diarrhea. Yaupon holly's latin name is suggestive of this: Ilex vomitoria.

Plum tree is only a problem if the child chews on wilting foliage, twigs or bark, or eats a bunch of seeds, all of which (like in most plants of this genus) contains compounds which turn into hydrocyanic acid when digested (causing cyanide poisoning). I would consider that pretty unlikely, but I'm offering it in the interest of full disclosure.

I'm not aware of any dangers with magnolias.