poison diaires

Feverfew is among nature’s most powerful plants that contain medical benefits. The plant is covered by flowers reminiscent of daisies and has citrus-scented leaves.

Its well-known and documented health properties include being an anti-inflammatory that can treat rheumatism, arthritis, migraine headaches and tension headaches.

 

The Rosary Pea, which is also referred to as the Crab’s Eye or Jumbie Bead, is listed among the 10 most dangerous killer plants and can be found in most parts of the world. It is best known for its seeds that have a bright red to orange color with a single black spot.

The poison found in the plant is called Abrin, which is very similar to the common poison known as Ricin that is found in most poisonous plants. The difference between these two toxins is that Abrin is approximately 75 times more potent than Ricin - as little as 3 micrograms can kill an adult human.

Blister Bush (Notobubon Galbanum)

External image

The Blister Bush is part of the Apiaceae family that is native to South Africa.

It is part of the same family as the edible carrot and herbs, fennel & dill however, it is NOT edible. Even touching the plant causes severe blistering that worsens when exposed to sunlight.

The leaves of a Blister bush are similar to those of parsley & celery. The plant also produces small yellow flowers on green compound umbels which give off flat winged seeds. 

They are usually found growing at medium to high altitudes in shaded & dampened areas, however it can grow in areas of direct sunlight at lower altitudes also.

The surface of the plant is covered in a cocktail of chemicals. Psoralen, xanthotoxin & bergaphen, all of which cause phototoxic reactions resulting in blistering. Exposing the effected skin to ultra violet light, such as sun light, can cause the toxins to trigger their effects, leading to the itching and blistering to worsen. 

Washing the effected area may help to prevent the toxins triggering their effect in light sources and to ease the blistering. Sun tan lotion with a high factor (50-100) can also be used to hide the irritation. It is best to apply this before the skin has blistered. 

After 5-7 days it should stop weeping and itching and you should allow the welt to breathe and heal, although you may be left with a very tender scab and scars.

Burdocks herb is a prickly, thistle-like plant with hollow leafstalks and large dark green. The plant is said to resemble the elephant ear plant.

The purple prickly burs are known for easily catching on to clothing or fur. Burdock has proved to have many uses in traditional medicine. It’s known to be a highly effective treatment against poison ivy and poison oak, a blood-purifying agent and a useful scalp treatment.

Poinsettia

The Poinsettia (Euphorbia Pulcherrima) is a species of the spurge family, native to Mexico and Central America.

It’s name derives from the minister of Mexico, Joel Roberts Ponsett who introduced the plant in 1825.

It’s bright red and green foliage makes it a very popular holiday plant and decoration.December 12th is now known by some as National Poinsettia Day!

Traditions:

In the Aztec language Nahuatl it is called a Cuitlaxochitl. The Aztecs used the plant to produce red dye and to use as a antipyretic medication.

Today in Mexico it is known as ‘Noche Buena’ which means Christmas Eve. Its relationship with Christmas began in the 16th century and was based on the legend that a young girl was too poor to provide gifts for Jesus’ Birthday and an Angel inspired her to gather plants to leave at the church altar.

The star shaped leaves are thought to symbolise the star of Bethlehem and the red representing the blood sacrificed by Jesus.

Toxicity:

Although the leaves of a Poinsettia are mildly toxic there is a common misconception that they are deadly. This belief is based on the urban legend that two young children died after the supposed ingestion of the leaf. 

The sap and Latex of the plant do contain toxins. If the sap comes in contact with a human eye it can cause temporary blindness. The latex can cause allergies. 

It can sometimes cause vomiting or diarrhoea if accidentally ingested by a small child, however the taste is not very nice, so it is rare for enough to ever be ingested. However if enough is, the symptoms are not deadly and there is no need for hospital treatment.

Apple (Malus Domestica)

External image

The seeds of an apple are mildly poisonous. They contain a small amount of amygdalin, a cyanogenic glycoside. The quantity in one apple core is not dangerous to humans, however, if enough seeds are ingested, it can be fatal. 

Aphrodisiac - Horseradish (Armoracia rusticana)

Armoracia rusticana aka Horseradish is a stimulant. Commonly the root is ingested. The root is often compared to an erect penis. Like other pungent spices it foments love. It is popular for renewing strength after sexual exhaustion. The root is rich in vitamin C, potassium,Ca, Mg, Iron and enzumes, stimulate activity of stomach and intestines and has expectorant, diuretic and warming effects.

Holly

Holly is a green and glossy leaved, evergreen, berry bearing plant. There are various different types of the Holly plant all over the World.

The specific Holly ‘sprig’ we are familiar with is called llex aquifolium. It is commonly used at Christmas time on cards, in garlands and in wreaths.

Throughout the rest of the year, Holly is often used as hedging. Its spikey leaves act as a painful barrier that can be difficult to get through.

The berries of the female plant mature and redden in October and November. Male and Female plants must be planted next to each other for the Berries to mature, as the Male plant must fertalise the female for the the Berries to develop. 

The berries contain alkaloids, caffeine and theobromine and are somewhat toxic to humans, however their poisonous properties have always been overstated and fatalities are almost unknown. They are commonly eaten by  birds. The berries are only seen to be highly poisonous to household pets. 

Bryn Celli Ddu

Bryn Celli Ddu is a hollow Neolithic cairn, which can be found near the Strait of Menai on the island of Anglesey. It dates to around 3000BC, which makes it older than the Great Pyramids of Giza. Much like Newgrange in Western Ireland and Maeshowe in the Scottish Orkneys, Bryn Celli Ddu is an astronomical lightbox. It is carefully constructed to act as a prism and lens for the power of the sun. Each year, at the Winter and Summer Solstices, beams of sunlight will illuminate the hollow chamber within the cairn in a spectacular light-show to mark the brightest and darkest hours of the solar calendar. What this ancient temple of light meant to the Celtic Britons is unknown but the fact of its construction points to a highly sophisticated culture. A tribe that engaged in sun worship and had the precise technical understanding to build an astronomical observatory when much of the rest of the world was living as hunter-gatherers.