Monday, April 5, 2010

Common Poisonous plants around us ( in India)

Updated on 25-04-2018 Popular garden plants added
Plants look innocent but some contain many harmful substances .These substances produced under natural conditions may cause illness or death  to human beings and animals. Poisonous plants are found in higher plants and in lower groups also. Only angiosperms are mentioned here. Most of the poisonous plants are wild in origin.Nature’s poisons are available to us next door, they are certainly accessible world wide.
These plants are never eaten by animals.
Objective: The main objective is to provide information on the harmful plants with images of the plant for easy identification. This will help us to be cautious with the plants. These plants are available throughout Andhra Pradesh and in Southern India. Plants available out side A.P but in India are included.
When swallowed, toxic substances of plants interfere with normal body functions. Each group of poison acts differently. The severity of poisoning in man depends on quantity of poison ingested, health and nutritional status and age of the victim. Toxic substances in plants exist in a variety of forms. Chemically most of them are alkaloids, polypeptides, amines, glycosides, oxalates, resins and other phyto-toxins.
Toxic plants are also useful in Forensic investigations.
చిన్న పిల్లలు తెలిసో, తెలియకో కుతూహలం తోనో మొక్కల తో ఆడుకుంటున్నపుడు, తోట పని చేస్తూ విత్తనాలు, దంపలు , ఆకులు నోట్లో పెట్టుకోవడం తినడం చేస్తుంటారు . కంగారు పడకుండా ఏమి తిన్నారో చూపమని అడగండి, లేదా చేతిలో మిగిలిన మొక్క భాగాన్ని చూడండి.  విషపు మొక్క తిన్నట్టు తెలిస్తే వెంటనే ఆస్పత్రి కి తీసుకెళ్ళి వైద్యుని సంప్రదించ వలెను. తిన్న మొక్క భాగము వైద్యునికి చూపితే త్వరగా కచ్చితమైన చికిత్సకు వీలు కలుగుతుంది. స్వంత వైద్యము , చిట్కాలు సురక్షితము కావుఇది  ప్రాణాలు కాపాడుకోడానికి వ్రాసిన  వ్యాసమే
విషపు మొక్కలకు చిన్నపిల్లలను దూరంగా ఉంచండి. 
 If anyone  consume the toxic plant or part they should be contacted a hospital emergency ward immediately.Educate your children and neighbors on the toxic effects of plants. Save your children from this toxic plants.
Depending upon the toxic effect they are grouped into following categories:
Highly toxic or lethal plants:(Category 1) These plants may cause serious illness or death. If ingested please immediately rush to the hospital with the plant sample or information.
1.Name of the plantAbrus precatorious L.,
Family: Fabaceae
Common Name: crab’s eye, Indian liquorice, Ratti seesds, గురు గింజలు, గురువింద 
Toxic part: Seed
Toxic substanceAbrin. It is a ribosome - inactivating protein, thus blocks protein synthesis and it is one of the most deadly plant toxins known. A dose of 0.1-1 mug/kg of body weight is fatal to humans. It is as poisonous as Cobra bight.
Symptoms:Symptoms may be rapid or delayed to 1-2 days. 1 seed is sufficient to kill an adult human.  The toxin is released only after breaking of seeds. Infusion of seed extracts can cause eye damage, conjunctivitis and even blindness after contact. The major symptoms of poisoning are acute gastroenteritis with nausea, vomiting and diarrhoea leading to dehydration, convulsions, and shock. Dehydration, as well as direct toxicity on the kidneys, could result in oliguria that might progress to death in uraemia (William Boericke, 1999; Inchem, 2004).If the dehulled seed is contacted with blood or nerves it causes immediate death; thanks for the hard seed coat.
Occurence: The seeds are attractive, red with a black spot; they are used to weigh gold in olden days. The plant is a creeper with purple flowers and found in waste places and in forests throughout India.
Abrus precatorius opened fruit

2. Name of the plantCascabela thevetia (L.) Lippold 
Common name:Yellow oleander;  పచ్చ గన్నేరు
Family: Apocyanaceae
Toxic part: Seed(పప్పు
Toxic substance: The main toxins are the cardenolides called thevetin A and thevetin B; others include peruvoside, neriifolin, thevitoxin and ruvoside glycosides.
Symptoms: The seed is broken and the cotyledons are consumed for suicide. Consumption of seed causes gastric and cardiotoxic symptoms. They include nausea, vomiting, heart stimulation, convulsion and finally death.
One  seed can cause death of an adult. In villages many people eat it to commit suicide; they suffer from ailments even after survival.
Occurrence: The plant produces yellow, orange, white flowers. It is cultivated in gardens, Lord Shiva temples, and also found in open forests.

Cascabela seed
3. Name of the plant: Nerium oleander L.,
Family: Apocyanaceae
Common name: Pink oleander; ఎర్ర గన్నేరుకస్తూరి
Toxic part: Entire plant, especially leaves.
Toxic substance: Nerin, oleandrin, folinerio. Oleandrin and oleandrigenin, the cardiac glycosides are the toxic principle. 
Symptoms: A single leaf is sufficient to kill an adult. It affects gastrointestinal system, the heart, and the central nervous system. Symptoms include nausea, vomiting, dizziness, slowed pulse, irregular heartbeat, dialation of pupils, drowsiness, unconsciousness, paralysis of legs and finally death.
The milky latex if in contact with the skin can cause blistering, irritation and soreness. 
Occurrence:  This plant is widely cultivated in gardens. The flowers are used for worship.
4. Name of the plant: Cleistanthus collinus (Roxb.) Benth. ex Hook.f .
Family: Euphorbiaceae
Common name: Garari, karra ;Vodisi, vadisaaku, Korisi వొడిసి ఆకు, కొరిసి 
Toxic substance: Cleistanthin A, B, C, D; polyols in tanins, Beta sitosterol and Collinusin. It is a Neurotoxin.
Toxic part: Fruits and leaves are highly poisonous, more effective if eaten with jaggery. Young fruits resemble amla fruits. It is used to commit suicide by many.
Symptoms: Ingestion of 1-2 leaves or 1or 2 fruits can kill a person. It is a quick poison. Symptoms include Cardiac arythms, hepotension and nervousness. No known antidote is available.
Occurrence:  Common in scrub forests.
Cleistanthus collinus
5. Name of the plantGloriosa superba L.,
Family: Colchicaceae
Common nameFlame lily, fire lily, tiger claw, gloriosa lily, glory lily, superb lily, climbing lily, and creeping lily; నాభి , నాగేటి గడ్డ
Toxic part: All parts of the plant are toxic, but tubers are highly poisonous.
Toxic principle: Colchicine
One tuber is sufficient to kill an adult. The tuber is used as an abortifacient by tribals; but I warn girls not to ingest the tuber; it kills you. The tubers are mixed with yam or Sweet potato to kill others.  
Symptoms: Poisoning is known to cause very rapid and severe clinical manifestations due gastro intestinal, neurological, cardiac and bone marrow toxicity. If ingested it causes nausea, vomiting, numbness, and tingling around the mouth, burning in the throat, abdominal pain, and bloody diarrhoea. Muscle pain and confusion associated with tea coloured urine; hypotension and hypoventilation may occur. It causes prolonged vaginal bleeding in women. Hair loss is another major symptom.
Other uses: The tubers are widely used in Ayurvedic and tribal medicine to treat many diseases in very low doses. It is used as snake repellent by many tribes.
Occurrence: This plant is a beautiful twiner with attractive red flowers. Rhizome is the underground stem. It looks like a plough. Common in the foot of hills.

6. Name of the plant: Ricinus communis L.,
Family: Euphorbiaceae
Common name: Castor bean; ఆముదము
Toxic part: Seed
Toxic substance: Ricin. It is as powerful as HCN and as potent as snake poison.It is a toxalbumin.
Symptoms: When the raw seeds are eaten it will cause death.
3-10 seeds can cause death in children.
Symptoms include nausea, vomiting, burning of mouth, diarrohea, stomachache, convulsions dullness of vision, anaemia, and death in 1-10 days. The toxicity is dose related and depends on the amount of castor beans ingested. There is no specific treatment and symptomatic management to reduce the load of the toxin needs to be initiated quickly and early when a case of poisoning is suspected so that serious complications will be avoided. Visceral damage is caused. Castor oil is used as laxative; but more than 1 table spoon may cause death, it damages the gastro-intestinal secretions.
Occurence: It is found along railway lines and waste places. It is cultivated for the oil from the seeds. The oil is used in manufacture of cosmetics, soaps, lubricants etc.,
Ricinus communis seed
7. Name of the plant: Strychnos nux-vomica L
Common name: Nux Vomica, Poison Nut, semen strychnos and quaker buttons Nux-vomica; Mushti విష ముష్టి
Family: Loganiaceae
Toxic part: Seeds are toxic to humans; stem bark is used as fish poisoning.
Toxic Principle: Strychnine is the poisonous principle, lethal dose 30-120mg. In low doses it is not fatal. 10-20 seeds can kill an adult. It is relatively slow poison. Seeds are used to commit suicide.
Symptoms: Ingestion of seed powder or seeds cause nausea, headache, dropsy and kidney failure. Strychnine is a powerful central nervous system stimulant that competes with the inhibitory neurotransmitter glycine, producing an excitatory state with hyperreflexia, severe muscle spasm, and convulsions.Its principal action is to cause uncontrolled muscle contractions. In overdose, these lead to death from exhaustion or cardiac arrest. The muscle contractions can result in muscle tearing itself away from bone allowing the body to be twisted into normally impossible positions.
Medicinal and other uses: nux vomica is used for diseases of the digestive tract, disorders of the heart and circulatory system, diseases of the eye, and lung disease. It is also used for nerve conditions, depression, migraineheadache, symptoms of menopause, and a blood vessel disorder.
A once popular murder weapon that is believed to have killed an unknowable number of people, especially during the 19th century. It is used as rat poison. It is common in scrub forests of A.P.
Strychnos nuxvomica seed

Strychnos nux-vomica 
8. Name of the plantDigitalis purpurea L.
Family: Plantaginaceae
Common names: foxglovecommon foxglovepurple foxglove or lady's glove
Occurance: Is found in Himalayan region and in South Kodaikanal and Nilagiri areas.
Toxic part and substance: Due to the presence of the cardiac glycoside digitoxin, the leaves, flowers and seeds of this plant are all poisonous to humans and some animals and can be fatal if eaten.
Symptoms:  Upon ingestion, this plant can cause toxic reactions that lead to severe sickness and death in animals and in humans. Human poisoning occurs rarely. However, poisoning was reported in the children who ate the flowers or drank water from vases. Accidentally including foxglove leaves in tea has led to poisoning and death.
Medicinal use: Several important pharmaceutical drugs such as digitalis and digoxin are derived from this plant. The chemicals increase the force of contraction of the heart muscle and are therefore used in cases of heart congestion.
It is not found in AndhraPradesh.
 image- please visit:
9. Name of the plantCerbera odollum Gaertn.,
Family: Apocyanaceae
Common name: Kerala Suicide tree, dog bean, ordeal tree, pong pong, sea mango(Eng.); adavi arali అడవిఆరళి(Tel.) 
Fruits resemble unripe (green) mangoes. Flowers white, the plant grows in back waters in sea shores;
Toxcity:  All parts of the plant are poisonous; 
The latex and seeds contain cardiac glycosides- thevitin .the kernel of the fruit contains the cardiac glycoside cerberin, which blocks cardiac calcium ion channels. 
It is a common agent of homicide and suicide in some parts of South India, especially in Kerala, in coastal areas of Godavari. 
SymptomsVomiting , thrombocytopenia, and sinus bradycardia  were the most common features of poisoning. If treated recovery is possible.  In homicides, where a few kernels are mixed in with spicy and flavorful foods to mask any bitterness

Cerbera odollam fruits
10.Name of the plantDatura metel/ D.stramonium and, D.innoxia
Family: Solanaceae.
Common name: Angel's trumpet, devil's trumpet, black trumpet; ఉమ్మెత్త
Toxic part: Entire plant,especially seeds. 20 seeds are sufficient to cause poisoning in an adult. Seeds are sedative and intoxicating in large doses.
Toxic substance: Hyoscyamine,hyoscine,atropine, Scopolamine, and other glycosides.
Symptoms: Dry mouth, thirst, nausea, vomittinng, diarrhea, delirium and convulsions. Finally death if not treated.Eye contact with the sap may cause temporary blindness.
The leaves are used to smoke by Asthma patients. The smoke is also used as stimulant, it causes mild hallucination.వీటి ఆకుల్లోవిత్తనాల్లో  hyoscamine and hyoscine అనే alkaloids  ఉంటాయి.
 ఇవి భ్రమలుమరో లోకంలో ఉన్నట్లు అనుభూతి కలిగిస్తాయటకొందరు గిరిజన తెగలుముఖ్యంగా పండగలు , జాతర్లలో  వీటి ఆకులను గంజాయి లాగ పొగ పీలుస్తారు/  దయ్యాలుదేవుళ్ళు వంటి పైకి వచ్చిన వారికిధూపం లాగ పొగ పెడతారు . వీటి పొగ ఎక్కువయితే చని పోతారు
Occurence: It is found on road side in waste places.

11. Name of the plant : Atropa belladonna L., 
Family: Solanaceae
Common name: Belladonna or deadly nightshade, 
Toxic part: Leaves and berries
Toxic substance: Tropane alkaloids- atropine, hyoscine, hyoscyamine
Symptoms: Berries are sweet in taste, If eaten they are deadly poisonous; cardiovascular problems, gastrointestinal diseases cause death. 
The tropane alkaloids of A. belladonna were used as poisons, and early humans made poisonous arrows.

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Category 2 toxic plants: Potentially toxic, but death is depending on the level of exposure.  If attended immediately poisoning can be easily cured.
12. Name of the Plant: Jatropha curcas L.,
Family: Euphorbiaceae
Common name: Bio-diesel plant, physic nut, Barbdos nut; పెద్ద నేపాళం, అడవి ఆముదం  
Toxic part: Seed
Toxic substance: Jatropin, curcin and taxalbumin.
Symptoms appear in 30 minutes to 2 hours after ingestion. Vomiting, pain in abdomen, nausea, diarrhoea and convolusions are observed. The seeds are sweet to taste, children tempted to taste. 8-10seeds can cause death. If treated in time recovery is possible. 

Jatropha curcas
13.Name of the PlantArgemone mexicana L.,
Family: Papaveraceae
Common names: Mexican poppy, prickly poppy,బలురక్కసి, బ్రహ్మదండి, పిచ్చికుసుమ     
Toxic part: Entire plant, especially seed
Toxic substance: Argemone oil contain 2 alkaloids- sanguinarine and
Symptoms: It will not cause immediate death but slowly it creates many health problems that may lead to death. Wheat flour contaminated with Argemone seeds cause acute inflammation of gastro-intestinal tract. Several epidemics occurred in India due to argemone oil poisoning. People were affected with dropsy, glaucoma followed by blindness. Argemone poisoning cause non inflammatory bilateral edema of legs associated with diarrhoea, cardiac failure and sometimes even death. It also produces abortion, vomiting anaemia and alopecia. Sometimes the oil from the Argemone seeds is used to adulterate edible oils especially Mustard oil and Sesamum oils.  Beware of this adulteration. This plant is smoked as a marijuana substitute. 
Occurence: It is found in road side and also in waste places.

Argemone mexicana

14. Name of the plant : Catharanthus roseus (L.) G.Don,
Family: Apocyanaceae
Common name: Madagascar Periwinckle, Vinca, Cape periwinkle, rose periwinkle, rosy periwinkle, Bright eyes, and "old-maid".; Billa ganneru, nithya kalyani  బిళ్ల గన్నేరునిత్యకళ్యాణి(Tel.).   
Toxic part: All parts are toxic if consumed orally by humans.
Toxic substance:it is  traditionally used as an anti diabetic and anti cancer drug.The substances vinblastine and vincristine and many other alkaloids. In small doses it is used as a medicine for some diseases.
Symptoms:  If more than 2 leaves are ingested symptoms begin to appear; it causes nausea, vomiting, heart stimulation, convulsion and mortality is rare; symptoms are due to renal- hepato- and hematopoeitic toxicity. Higher than 300 mg of extract can produce signs of biochemical and histopathological toxicity in liver, kidney and heart. 
Poisoning occur due to over dosage by herbal/ traditional healers. 
Occurrence: Exotic. Widely cultivated as an ornamental; and runs wild on roadsides.

Catharanthus roseus
15. Plant name: Strychnos potatorum L.f., 
Common names: Clearing nut; Chillaginja చిల్లగింజ (Tel.).
Family: Loganiaceae
Toxicity: Seeds are  toxic in doses of 2g per kg body weight. If the seeds are crushed and eaten they are toxic. 
But Seeds as whole are used to clear turbid water.
Toxic principle: diaboline (major alkaloid) and its acetate is the principle chemical. 
Symptoms: Same as Strychnos nuxvomica
Occurence:Common in scrub forests.
Strychnos potatorum
16.Plant name: Pergularia daemia (Forssk.) Chiov.,
Family: Apocynaceae
Common name: Pergularia, దుష్టపాకు, జుట్ట పాకు  
Toxicity: The plant is used in Ayurvedic and folk lore medicine in India. Over dosage
May lead to many complications because it is a highly toxic plant, especially the aerial parts, due to the presence of numerous cardenolides and cardenolide glycoside; these have digitalis-like cardio-activity.
The latex in the plant is poisonous. It is used as a fishing and hunting poison, and is added to water to poison animals.
Pergularia Daemia

17.Plant name: Melia azedarach L.,
Family: Meliaceae
Ver.names: Bakain, cape lilac, ceylon cedar, ceylon mahogany, chinese berry, chinese tree, indian or persian lilac, lunumidella, white cedar(Eng.); తురకవేప, కొండ వేప  
Toxic part: Fruit
Symptoms: Fruits are poisonous to humans if eaten more than 5-6. The toxins are neurotoxins and unidentified resins found mainly in the fruits. The first symptoms of poisoning appear a few hours after ingestion. They may include loss of appetite, vomiting, constipation or diarrhoea, bloody faeces, stomach pain, pulmonary congestion, cardiac arrest, rigidity, lack of coordination and general weakness. Death may take place after about 24 hours.

18. Name of the plant: Adenium obesum (Forssk.) Roem. & Schult. 
Family: Apocyanaceae
Common name: Desert rose, Adenium
It is an exotic garden/ornamental  plant, widely cultivated in India.
Toxicity: It produces a sap in its roots and stems that contains cardiac glycosides. All parts of the plant are toxic. Symptoms may include slow heart beat, low blood pressure, lethargy, dizziness and stomach upset.
 This sap is used as arrow poison for hunting large game throughout much of Africa and as a fish toxin.
Adenium obesum
19. Name of the plantLantana camera L.,
Family: Verbenaceae
Common name: Wild sage; పులి కంప
Toxic part: Berry and leaves.
Toxic substance: Hepatotoxins called called lantadenes are present in leaves. (Triterpenoids and a sterol) in leaves
Lancamrone and oleanonic acid are also present in leaves.

Symptoms: Symptoms are delayed several hours and may include vomiting, diarrhoea, laboured breathing, dilated pupils, lethargy and weakness. Few fruits cause death in children. It is hepatogenic. Leaves induce photosensitization. Jaundice circulatory collapse may occur if not attended and finally death.
Lantana camera
20. Plant name: Pentalinon luteum (L.) B.F.Hansen & Wunderlin,
Family: Apocynaceae
Ver.names: Hammock viper's-tail, licebush, wild allamanda, wild wist, and yellow mandevilla(Eng.).
Toxic part: Leaves
Toxic principle: A cardiotoxic steroid
Symptoms: Latent period is variable depending on the quantity ingested.
Hyperkalemia is indicator of poisoning. Nausea, numbness, chest pain, difficulty in breathing may be noticed on ingestion of leaf.
It is widely cultivated in India as an ornamental. Research on human poisoning is not widely carried out so far.
Pentalinion leutem
21. Name of the plant: Allamanda cathartica L.,
Family: Apocynaceae
Ver.names: Golden trumpet, common trumpetvine, and yellow allamanda (Eng.)
Toxic part: Leaves; ingestion of large amounts can be toxic. 
Toxic principle: All parts of the plant contain allamandin, a toxic iridoid lactone.
Symptoms: Fever, swollen lips, thirst, nausea, diarrhea; skin irritation upon contact with cell sap.
Occurrence: It is grown as ornamental plant. 
Allamanda cathertica
22.Plant name: Codiaeum variegatum (L.)A.Juss.
Family: Euphorbiaceae
Common name: Garden croton, variegated croton.క్రోటన్ 
Toxicity: All parts of the plant are toxic. It contains an oil with violently purgative and irritating qualities, which is also suspected of being a co-carcinogen. Luckily, it tastes dreadful, so accidental poisonings are rare.
Even dried plant materials retain their poisonous properties.
Toxic substance: Volatile oils, resins, alkaloids, and glycosides: quite a cocktail of bad stuff.
Symptoms: Consumption of the seeds can be fatal to children; the sap can cause skin irritation in some people.If ingested it cause vomiting, nausea, and/or diarrhea.
Codiam variegatum 
23.Plant name: Epipremnum aureum (Linden & André) G.S.Bunting
Family: Araceae
Ver.names: Golden pothos, money plant, devil’s vine; మనీ ప్లాంట్ 
Toxicity: It is mildly toxic to humans. All parts of the plant contain needle-like calcium oxalate crystals; if chewed or eaten, can cause immediate pain or a burning sensation and swelling of the lips, mouth, tongue and throat. The sap may cause contact dermatitis and eye irritation. If difficulty in breathing or swallowing please rush to the doctor. It is a common plant in many households.
Golden pothos
24.Plant name: Euphorbia milii var.millii Crown of thorns, Christ thorn, Christ plant (Eng.)
Family: Euphorbiaceae
It is a very common house plant, and also found in many places as an ornamental.
Toxicity: The sap is reported as being corrosive to the skin and eyes, causing skin blisters and temporary blindness. The stout spines can also cause mechanical injury.
Euphorbia mili 
25. Name of the plantEuphorbia tirucalli L.
Family: Euphorbiaceae
Common name: Firestick Plants, Indian Tree Spurge, Naked Lady, Pencil Tree, Sticks on Fire or Milk Bush (Eng.);పుల్లల జెముడు 
Toxicity:Many members of Euphorbia genus are quite poisonous, due to the presence of phorbol esters.

Symptoms: The milky sap is corrosive. Skin contact can cause intense burning and blisters. If splashed directly into the eye or transferred from fingers, symptoms can include an immediate burning, tearing, sensitivity to light, red, swollen eyelids, bleeding, and blurred vision. Symptoms may worsen over the next 12 hours, and result in temporary blindness lasting for several days. If the sap is ingested, symptoms can include burning of the lips, tongue and mouth, salivation and vomiting. Deaths have been recorded from ingestion of the sap.
Euphorbia tirucalli
26.Plant name: Euphorbia antiquorum L.,
Family: Euphorbiaceae
Common names: Triangular Spurge, Square Spurge, Square milk hedge, Fleshy spurge (Eng.);బొంత జెముడు 
Toxcity: Root bark is purgative.The latex is applied externally to swellings, boils, warts and other skin affections in folk medicine.The whole plant is poisonous. In almost all cases, the latex found in Euphorbia species is toxic on ingestion and highly irritant externally, causing photosensitive skin reactions and severe inflammation, especially when it comes into contact with eyes or open cuts.
Euphorbia antiquorum
27.Name of the plant: Euphorbia tithymaloides L.,
Family: Euphorbiaceae
Common names: Devil's Backbone, Japanese Poinsettia, Slipper Spurge, Redbird Cactus, Christmas Candle (Eng.);
It is found as fencing plant and also as an ornamental plant in many households and offices.
Toxic principle: All parts of the plant contain euphorbol (a complex terpene) and other diterpene esters. These are also known carcinogens. Beta-sitosterol and oxime  are known toxins and found in leaves and stems.
Toxcity: All parts are toxic. Sap can irritate mucosal membranes. When ingested, the irritation of the mucosal membranes of the stomach and intestines will cause nausea and vomiting. Ingestion of seed cause vomiting and diarrhoea associated with severe stomach pain. If sap is contacted with eye there is burning sensation  and reduced visual actuity occur.
Don’t get panicked; wash repeatedly with water. Then go for medical advice.
Euphorbia tithymaloides
28.Name of the plantEuphorbia cyathophora  L
Common name: Poinsettia
Family: Euphorbiaceae
Toxic part: Entire plant
Toxic substance: Alkaloids in the latex.
Symptoms: Ingestion of a small twig can cause severe irritation in mouth, throat& stomach. When treated in time death can be avoided.
Occurence: Found cultivated in the gardens.
Euphorbia cyathophora
29.Name of the plant : Dieffenbachia bowmannii Carrière
Family: Araceae
Common name: Dumb cane, mother in law's tongue
It is a common ornamental plant in house holds and offices.
Toxicity and symptoms:
Leaf contains needle shaped calcium oxalate crystals called raphides If a leaf is chewed, these crystals can cause a temporary burning sensation and erythema. In rare cases, edema of tissues exposed to the plant has been reported. It can cause a host of unpleasant symptoms, including intense numbing, oral irritation, excessive drooling, and localized swelling. 
Don't get panicked, wash the mouth with water, if symptoms persists more than half an hour seek medical help. Death is rare.
Dumb cane
30.Name of the plantCestrum nocturnum L.
Common name: Night queen; రేరాణి 
Family: Solanaceae
Toxic part: Leaves and berries
Toxic substance: Atropine, anticholinergic alkaloids are present in leaves; and solanine in unripe fruit.
Symptoms: People with with respiratory sensitivities or asthma, have reported difficulty breathing, irritation of the nose and throat, headache, nausea, or other symptoms when exposed to the blossom's powerful scent. Solanine alkaloids are haemolytic in humans. If fruit is ingested it may result in temperature, rapid pulse, excess salivation and gastritis.
Cestrum nocturnum
31.Plant name: Hippeastrum puniceum (Lam.) Voss,
Family: Amaryllidaeceae
Ver.names: Barbados lily, Easter lily, cacao lily, cocoa lily and amaryllis lily(Eng.).
It is a widely grown ornamental
Toxicity: The bulb contains alkaloids, including lycorine. It is toxic, especially if eaten in large quantities, causing nausea, vomiting, salivation and possibly diarrhoea.
32.Plant name: Caladium bicolor (Aiton)Vent.,
Family: Araceae
 Ver.names: Caladium, fancy-leaved caladium, angel wings, heart of Jesus, elephant ears (Eng.).
Toxicity: All parts of the plant are poisonous. Due to presence of Calcium oxalate crystals in the sap it causes rash, irritation of skin. If ingested it affects mucous membrane; but no deaths are reported.
Caladium bicolor
33.Plant name: Parthenium hysterophorus L.,
Family:  Asteraceae
Common names: Santa Maria Feverfew and Whitetop Weed, Carrot Grass, Congress grass, Wild carrot weed (Eng.);వయ్యారి భామ, పిచ్చి మాచిపత్రి  
Toxicity: All parts are toxic.The main substance responsible is parthenin, which is dangerously toxic.
Symptoms: Contact with the plant causes dermatitis and respiratory malfunction in humans, and dermatitis in cattle and domestic animals. Persons exposed to this plant for prolonged period manifest the symptoms of skin inflammation, eczema, asthma, allergic rhinitis, hay fever, black spots, burning and blisters around eyes. The milk and meat quality of cattle, buffalo and sheep deteriorate on consumption of this weed   Crop production is drastically reduced owing to its allelopathy. Also aggressive dominance of this weed threatens biodiversity. 
Parthenium hysterophorus
34.Plant name: Tabernaemontana divaricata (L.) R.Br. ex Roem. & Schult.,
Family: Apocynaceae
Common names:  Pinwheel Flower, Crape Jasmine, East India Rosebay andNero's Crown (Eng.);నందివర్ధనం  
Cultivated as an ornamental.
Toxicity: All parts of the plant are poisonous. The plant has been reported to contain a variety of alkaloids, including, in the bark of the stem and root, including tabernaemontanine, coronarine, coronaridine and dregamine.
Medicinal uses: The roots, leaves, and flowers are used against snake and scorpion poisoning in China.
Tabernimontana divaricata
35.Plant name: Calotropis gigantea (L.) Dryand., and Calotropis procera (Aiton)W.T.Aiton
Family: Apocyanaceae
Common names: Giant Milk Weed, Crown Flower, Bowstring hemp, Giant Calotrope, Milkweed, Madar (Eng.)జిల్లేడు  
Toxicity: All parts of the plant yield thick milky latex. It is a poison. Latex contain  uscharin, calotoxin, calactin, and calotropin. The plant also contains cardio glycosides.
Symptoms: Applied to the skin, it causes redness and vesication. When taken orally, the juice produces an acrid, bitter taste and burning pain in throat and stomach, salivation, stomatitis, vomiting, diarrhea, dilated pupils, tetanic convulsions, collapse and death. If the latex comes into contact with eyes it may cause temporary to permenant vision loss. There may not be any pain in eyes. If treated within 6-12 hours vision may be recovered. జిల్లేడు పాలు కళ్ళల్లో పడితే ఎటువంటి మంట , నొప్పి ఉండదు, కానీ కొద్ది సేపటికి కంటి చూపు తగ్గడం మొదలై చివరకు పూర్తిగా చూపు పోతుంది.  దీనికి ఎటువంటి మందులుగాని , ఆపరేషన్ గాని పనిచేయవు ; కాబట్టి జిల్లేడు తో జాగ్రత్త గా ఉండాలి. 
Calotropis gigantea
36. Plant name: Aristolochia bracteolata Lam., Aristolochia indica L., 
Family: Aristolochiaceae
Common name: Indian birth wort ఈశ్వరి
Toxcity: Aristolochic acid is the toxin. The root of Aritolochia indica is used as a medicinal plant to treat many ailments; but the root is a potential carcinogen and nephrotoxin; if over dose is given it will cause complications. The root smells camphor like odour, it is used to repel snakes. Roots also contain cytotoxic lignin savinin. A.bracteolata is also toxic like A.indica.
Aristolochia indica
37. Plant name: Drimia indica (Roxb.)Jessop,
Family: Asparagaceae
Common name: అడవి ఉల్లి 
Medicinal Uses: In small doses the bulb is cardiac, de-obstruent, diuretic, emmenagogue, expectorant and stimulant. The bulbs are used in Ayurveda and Unani medications, and hence they are collected unscrupulously by the tribals.
Toxicity: If taken in excess, the bulb is a narcotic, acrid poison causing nausea, slow, painful urination, and bloody urine.
Drimia indica

38. Plant name: Citrullus colocynthis (L.) Schrad.,
Family: Cucurbitaceae
Common names: Bitter apple, colocynth (Eng.);వెర్రి పుచ్చ 
Toxicity: It is used as purgative in Ayurveda. Fruit pulp is bitter, when given in large dose it is toxic. Eating of fruit cause vomiting, diarrhoea, hypotension, and shock. 
The pulp contains Colocynthin, and a phytosterol glycoside (citrullol), other glucosides (elaterin, elatericin B and dihydro-elatericin B), pectins and albuminoids.
Citrulus colocynthus
39.Plant name: Diplocyclos palmatus (L.) C.Jeffrey,  
Common names: Native Bryony, Striped cucumber, Lollipop climber, marble vine(Eng.);
లింగ దొండ , శివలింగవిత్తులు  
Medicinal use: The fruit is used as medicine to treat gynec problems in folk medicine.
Toxicity: The fruit and seeds are bitter and poisonous.
Phytochemical constituents: The fruit and seeds contain alkaloids, saponins and flavonoids.

40. Plant name: Trichosanthes tricuspidata Lour.,
Common names: Indrayan, bitter snake gourd (Eng.);  అవగూద, అబూద    
Toxicity: Fruits are poisonous.
Phytochemical constituents: Aerial parts contain saponin trichonin, hexacosanoic acid, cycloeucalenol, β-sitosterol, and α-spinasterol.

41. Plant name: Mirabilis jalapa L.,
Family: Nyctaginaceae
Common name: four o'clock flower; చంద్ర కాంత 
Toxicity: It is widely grown ornamental. The flowers are attractive. The seeds of the four o'clock resemble pepper grains and are poisonous if ingested; they can cause vomiting and diarrhea and, in large quantities, death in children.
Mirabilis jalapa
42. Plant name: Xanthium strumarium L.,
Family: Asteraceae
Common names:  Common cocklebur; మరులమాతంగి 
Toxcity: The leaves and seeds are used as medicine in traditional medical system. But in large quantities it is toxic. The seeds are eaten in famine hit areas. They should not be eaten in large quantities because they contain significant concentrations of the extremely toxic chemical carboxyatratyloside. The mature plant also contains at least four other toxins. If leaf is used as leafy vegetable or more than 10 seeds are eaten the symptoms included vomiting and altered mental states, followed by unconsciousness. Some tribes use the seeds along with Cannabis leaf to sedate people.

Xanthium strumarium
Edible plants with Poisonous chemicals.
43. Plant nameManihot esculenta Crantz
Family: Euphorbiaceae
Common name: Cassava, Tapioka; కర్ర పెండలము, ఆళ్వారిగడ్డలు 
Cassava is widely cultivated and eaten as a staple food in South India. The sweet varieties have pleasant flavour.
Toxicity: Fresh uncooked tubers are toxic .There are bitter and sweet varieties. Once harvested, bitter cassava must be treated and prepared properly prior to human or animal consumption, while sweet cassava can be used after simply boiling.
 The antinutritional and toxic factors are the cyanogenic glucosides  (linamarin and lotaustralin). On hydrolysis, these release hydrocyanic acid (HCN). Hence they should be cooked or processed.

Symptoms: Improper preparation of cassava can leave enough residual cyanide to cause acute cyanide intoxication, goiters and even ataxia, partial paralysis, or death.
Cassava tubers.
44. Plant name: Glycene max L.,
Family: Fabaceae
Common name: Soya beanసోయా 
Although it contains lots of good nutrients due to presence of some chemicals in raw soy beans proper methods need to detoxify the seeds. They must be soaked for 12 hours and cooked at high temperatures for 15 minutes. Or buy processed products.
Toxcity: Soy foods commonly cause allergy; symptoms appear within minutes to hours of ingestion. They cause urticaria and angioedema.  Lectins and saponins in raw soybeans can cause acute nausea, gas, abdominal pain, diarrhea or vomiting. People who suffer from hypothyroidism and gout should not take soy in any form it may worsen the situation. Trypsin inhibitors prevent protein absorption.
45. Plant name: Phaseolus vulgaris L.,
Family: Fabaceae
Common name: Red kidney bean, rajma రాజ్మా 
Toxicity: Raw and soaked beans are poisonous. They contain relatively high amounts of phytohemagglutinin, and thus are more toxic than most other bean varieties if not pre-soaked and subsequently heated to the boiling point for at least 10 minutes. Cooking at the lower temperature of 80 °C (176 °F), such as in a slow cooker, can increase this danger and raise the toxin concentration up to fivefold.
Primary symptoms of poisoning: Consumption of5-10 seeds of raw or soaked beans cause nausea, vomiting, and diarrhea with in 1-2 hours of eating. They will naturally subside in 6 hours, if persists please visit a doctor.

Hence they should be soaked overnight, or boil for three minutes and then set aside for 2–4 hours. Before cooking, soaked water is drained off and discarded.
Soy and rajma seeds
46. Plant name: Areca catechu L.,
Family: Arecaceae
Common name: beetle nut, Areca nut వక్కలు 
Toxicity: The seed contains alkaloids such as arecaidine and arecoline, which, when chewed, are intoxicating and slightly addictive.Although there is no immediate risk, they cause oral and oesophageal cancer . A World Health Organization sponsored group, found sufficient evidence that the habit of chewing betel quid, with or without tobacco, causes cancer in humans.
Areca nut 
47. Name of the plants: Annona squamosa L., (Custard apple సీతాఫలం) ;
Annona reticulata L., (wild-sweetsop, bull's heart రామాఫలం)
Family: Annonaceae
 Toxcity: It is occular poison. The fruits are widely consumed for the sweet pulp; but the seeds are hard and black.  The kernals are toxic. In south India some women apply seed paste for killing of  head lice or as a facial skin exfoliant. There are series of cases wherein the patients developed severe symptoms of toxic keratitis following accidental ocular exposure to the custard apple seeds.  Sap from cut branches is acrid and irritant and can severely injure the eyes. Kernals are neurotoxic if ingested orally. Beware of toxic seeds.
Annona squamosa
48. Plant name: Lathyrus sativus L.,
Family: Fabaceae
Common name: Kesari dal, grass peaకేసరిపప్పు  
The seed looks like re gram, but the cotyledons are irregular in shape. It is cooked as a dal in dry parts during famine. It is mixed with red gram as an adulterant.

Toxcity:It should be soaked and cooked . Due to water scarcity or lack of time it is directly cooked at low flame. Although eating in small quantities for short period is harm less, in seizable quantities for  a three-month period can cause permanent paralysis below the knees in adults and brain damage in children, a disorder known as lathyrism. The seeds contain a neurotoxin that causes a neurodegenerative disease when the seeds are consumed as a primary protein source for a prolonged period.
Kesari dal
Category 3 plants:
  They are not poisonous. But on contact causes allergic reactions. The juice, sap, or thorns of these plants may cause a skin rash or irritation. or ingestion of plant part may cause irritation of mouth, throat, skin resulting in throat swelling, breathing difficulties, burning pain, and stomach upset.
Don't get panicked, wash the affected part with water repeatedly. 
Contact dermatitisTragia involucrataదురద గోండి  , Mucuna atropurpurea, Mucuna prurienceదూలగొండి కాయలు; Agave కిత్తనార; sap of Mango మామిడి సొన , Buchnnia సార పప్పు కాయ రసం , జీడిపప్పు కాయల-గట్టి పెంకు నుండి వచ్చే రసం.
Colacasia esculenta చేమ దుంపలు they should be boiled to remove allergins. They cause itching.   
 to be contd....
Psychotropic/psychoactive  Plants: మత్తుకలిగించే మొక్కలు
వీటికి అలవాటు పడితే చావుకు దగ్గరగా వెళ్తున్నట్లే. వీటిని కొందరు తెలిసి వాడితే కొందరు తెలియకుండా నాటుమందుల ద్వారా, కొందరు గోసాయి వాళ్ళుభూత వైద్యుల ద్వారా తీసుకుంటారు. Once used the persons get addicted to the drugs, hence they are dangerous.     
 Botanical name: Erythroxylum coca Lam.,
Family: Erythroxylaceae
Toxicity: The leaves contain cocaine and other alkaloids. They are narcotic, cerebral-stimulant and locally anaesthetic.
Other uses: Chewed with lime or plant ashes the leaves cause a feeling of easiness and increasing energy. Therefore they are used by native peoples as a stimulant to better endure hunger, thirst and physical stress.
Cocaine is best known as an illegal recreational drug. Use of the coca leaf except for medical or scientific purposes is prohibited in many countries.
ee మొక్క ఆకుల లో సహజం గా లభించే alkaloid. మొక్క దక్షిణ అమెరికా దేశాల్లో(Peru, Bolivia etc., )లభిస్తుంది. మన దేశంలో పెరగదు. దీన్ని తీసుకున్న వారికి మొదట చాలా ఉత్సాహం, ఏదో తెలియని ఆనందం, భ్రమలు కలుగు తాయి, క్రమంగా కండరాల బలహీనత, రక్త హీనత , రక్తంలో విష పదార్థాలు పేరుకుని మరణిస్తారు. వేశ్యల ద్వారా  మత్తు మందును దాదాపు 100 సంవత్సరాల పూర్వం మన దేశంలోకి పరిచయం చేశారు
2.నల్లమందు-Opium-(గసగసాల మొక్క ) 
Botanical name:  Papaver somniferum L.,
Family: Papaveraceae
Toxicity: Opium poppy causes death accidentally, when prescribed medication is taken in overdose, to innocent victims, when used as a murder weapon, and as a by product of its use as a substance of abuse. Morphine and heroin are narcotic and death due to overdose is the most frequent cause of death; heroin can be smoked or inhaled
Toxic principle: Morphine is the best known of the alkaloids together with its derivative diamorphine which is better known as heroin.
The resin, opium, present throughout the plant but concentrated in the sap of the seed capsule, yields, morphine, codeine and other alkaloids called papaverine, laudanine, narcotine, narceine, amurine, nudaurine and protopine.
Medicinal uses: Opium is, generally, a key component of the 'soporific sponge', used to achieve anaesthesia for the performance of surgery. 
దీని కాయల నుండి లభించే latex లో opiates అనే alkaloids ఉంటాయి. వీటిలో morphine codeine  అనేవి  ముఖ్యమైనవి. హెరాయిన్ (heroin) అనేది  morphine నుండి రసాయన ప్రక్రియలో చేస్తారు
ఇది ప్రధానంగా నొప్పి నివారిణిగా పని చేసి , మత్తు కలిగించి క్రమంగా చావుకు దగ్గర చేస్తుంది. ప్రభుత్వ అనుమతి లేకుండా పంట సాగు చేయడం నేరము. మన దేశం లో కాశ్మీర్ లో కొన్ని చోట్ల దీన్ని సాగు చేస్తారు . ముఖ్యంగాఆఫ్గనిస్థాన్, పాకిస్థాన్ నుండి మన దేశంలోకి దొంగ చాటు గా వస్తుంది
Dry poppy pods and seeds
Latex from pod

3.  Cannabis  : 
Botanical name: Cannabis sativa L.,
Family: Cannabaceae
Common name: గంజాయి , భంగ్; charas, cannabis, గంజాయి-marijuana
Toxic principle: Differences in the chemical composition of Cannabis varieties may produce different effects in humans. Main psychoactive component is Tetrahydrocannabinol, abbreviated THC; another cannabinoid produced in high concentrations by some plants is cannabidiol(CBD)
Toxicity: The flowers contain psychoactive compounds. Herbal preparation of flowers is marijuana ; resinous extract is known as hashish, it is mainly consumed by smoking/ oral inhalation. It is used as hallucinogenic, hypnoticsedative and analgesic.  Ingestion of these plants may cause minor illnesses such as vomiting or diarrhea. Hallucination, delusion and blurred vision poor co-ordination are the main symptoms.  If ingested in large quantities it may also cause death. It is a slow poison.
దీన్ని  hallucinogenic,(భ్రమలు ),sedative,( మత్తు),  hypnotic (నిద్రకు) , నొప్పి నివారణకు analgesic పురాతన కాలం నుండి వాడుతున్నారు. దీని రెసిన్ నుండి hashish అనే మత్తు మందు తయారు చేస్తారు. మొక్కను దొంగతనంగా దేశమంతటా సాగు చేస్తున్నారు  
Cannabis sativa plant found on roadside
Legal status: కొకైన్ (ఇది మన దేశం లో పండదు ), నల్లమందు , గంజాయి నిషేధింపబడిన మత్తు మందులు. ఈ మొక్కలను సాగు చేయడం, రవాణా చేయడం , వ్యాపారం చేయడం  చట్ట రీత్యా నేరము.అయినప్పటికీ  గిరిజనులు  కొందరు కొండ ప్రాంతాల రైతులు దొంగతనం గా సాగు చేసి కష్టాలను కొని తెచ్చు కుంటున్నారు With out the legal permission of the government cultivation is a crime. Transport and selling in any form is also a crime.They may face imprisonment and fine under narcotic drugs act.  
వీటిని సేవిస్తే నాడీ వ్యవస్థ దెబ్బ తిని మరణిస్తారు. వీటి వాడకాన్ని ఇతరులకు వీటిని అలవాటు చేయడం కూడా చట్ట రీత్యా నేరమే!.   
4.Tobacco, పొగాకు/ తంబాకు
Botanical name:   Nicotiana tabacum L.,
Family: Solanaceae
Toxicity: Nicotine is the principle toxin. Tobacco in the form of cigars, Cigarettes, Bidis, Gutka or chewing of tobacco is lethal; use of tobacco causes cancer. It is also used as snuff.  When inhaled in short puffs it acts as a stimulant, but when smoked in deep drags it can have a tranquilizing effect. To block stress tobacco is used; gradually men are addicted to Nicotine.  Infusion of 30 grams of tobacco or inhalation of 1 gram of tobacco snuff is lethal.
గంజాయి ఎంత ప్రమాదకరమో పొగాకు కూడా అంతే! దీని సాగును వినియోగాన్ని నిషేధించాలివిత్తనాలు తప్ప అన్ని భాగాలు విషమే . 
వక్కలు,పొగాకు,సున్నం, వంటి వి కలిపి తయారు చేసే గుట్కాలు మొదట హాయిని ఇచ్చినా చివరకు కాన్సరు వచ్చి భయంకరమైన బాధ అనుభవించి చచ్చి పోతారుకొన్ని ప్రాంతాల్లో పొగాకు, సున్నం కలిపి చిన్న పిల్లల నోట్లో కుక్కి చంపే వారని ఒక పెద్దావిడ(a tribal woman) చెప్పింది. I am shocked to read a news item on 30th July 2017 (from Madhya Pradesh) that a woman tried to kill a girl (her granddaughter) by stuffing tobacco in her mouth. In another incident a 8 moths old boy has to be admitted for chewing the cigar of his grand father.(8 నెలల పసివాడు తాత చుట్ట ను తెలియక నోట్లో పెట్టుకుని చీకడం వలన  అనారోగ్యానికి గురైతే  ఆస్పత్రి లో చేర్చ వలసి వచ్చింది )  please keep your children away from tobacco. 
Tobacco plant /పొగాకు మొక్క 
5. Elephant creeper/చంద్రపొద
Name of the plant: Argyreia nervosa (Burm.f.)Boejr.,
Family: Convolvulaceae
Toxic part: Seeds.
Toxic substance: The seeds contain(LSD) d-lysergic acid amide, d-lysergamide, ergine, and LA-111-it is an antidepressant. It is illegal to posses the seeds in USA. Many tribes used the seeds for hallucinogenic effects.
Symptoms: Seeds posses hallucinogenic effect. విత్తనాలు మత్తు కలిగిస్తాయి.అందుకే కొందరు గోసాయి/స్వాముల  ఆశ్రమాల్లో తీగను పెంచుతుంటారు.   
Argyreia nervosa
Zornia diphylla leaves are used smoke by some god men if cannabis is not available.
Zornia diphylla  
కుక్క గొడుగులు : కింద చూపినటువంటి రంగు తో వున్నకుక్కగొడుగులు చాలా విష పూరితము. తిన రాదు. 

Amanita mushrooms 

                                                                     To be continued........  

Common name:
 rests.Occurance: . Common in hill slopes and as a weed in cutivated dry lands.  m


  1. excellent work. i hope this work is very useful for common man also

  2. this type of work s impose interest to taxonomists

  3. Superb information but lack one more that is jilledu ..the milk on contact with eyes will make blind permanently more surgeries/ operations help.

  4. thank u
    i m doctor i got this idea about plants important to me in hospital for management
    but actually photos should be more elaborating so as to make proper diagnosis
    but thank s


  6. thank you friend you given me a excellent information about plants. thank you very much

  7. Lantana camera Linn.var aculeata. i have eaten this plant leaves and fruits why am still alive

  8. Madam..
    Pl keep posting ur valuable information on medicinal plants..
    With the the similar kind of intention i started my blog..since i dnt have any authenticated degrees n my knowledge is limited i stopped posting in my blog.

  9. Some details about marulu teega pls

  10. Mam can you give some details about maralu teega plant
    Stepping on this plant will effect brain and he will be roaming around that area for some time after forgetting the way
    My mother's father worked as teacher at vendodu near gudur nellore
    He is to face this prolem at forest there

    1. There is no such plant. No such effect of any plant. It is a myth. Please contact a psychiatrist.

  11. Hello Mam,
    Can Strychnos potatorum seeds cause death ?Can you ellaborate please ?

    1. It is given in the para; it should not be crushed and eaten.

  12. It is stated that Vinca roseus/ Catharathus roseus is toxic or highly poisonous. In Italy is is called the plant of death. Yet it said to cure so many diseases. What a contradiction! How can someone prepare it at home in order to avoid toxicity and which parts of the pkants are used for treating which diseases. If the leaves, flowers, stem and roots are dried and then milled into a powder separately and stored under room temperature in sealed containers (eg. Polyethylene satchels, glass bottles or tins with lids on, are the health benefits lost and what is the shelf life under normal room temperature (20 -30 degrees centigrade)?

  13. Madam how many hours can a man survive after yellow oleander poisoning occured