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Aconitum query

What do other gardeners think about growing Aconitum (Monkshood)?  They are such beautiful plants when in bloom but I am concerned to read just how toxic they are.  Does anybody else grow them or should I dig them out?  Would you say they are safe at the back of the border and left alone?  I am interested in anyone else's opinion.
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Posts

  • Hostafan1Hostafan1 Posts: 31,588
    they're no more toxic than rhubarb leaves, foxgloves or privet. 
    If you don't eat them , they're all fine. 
    Devon.
  • DovefromaboveDovefromabove Central Norfolk UKPosts: 77,331
    I’ve never had a problem with growing them at the back of borders and I’ve seen them in similar situations in many gardens which open to the public. Beautiful plants 😊 
    “I am not lost, for I know where I am. But however, where I am may be lost.” Winnie the Pooh







  • Thank you both - that is very reassuring and they will certainly stay!!
  • You been watching Midsomer Murders too? ;)
    I grow aconites and have done for years with no ill effects, none to my cats either.
    They don't jump out and get you, though it makes sense to wear gloves when actually handling, but as I usually wear gloves anyway that isn't a problem.
    You might have to take extra care if there are young children around or a dog that likes tasting things.
    They are beautiful and very useful for my damp, shady border.
  • Hostafan1Hostafan1 Posts: 31,588
    Thank you both - that is very reassuring and they will certainly stay!!
    It's a fine line between being cautious and paranoid when it comes to "risk" I've had them growing in gardens when my daughters were young and never worried about toxicity
    Devon.
  • a1154a1154 Sunny South Scotland Posts: 947
    I have them in the garden too Christine and recently started worrying about toxicity. It’s not true you need to eat them, they are poisonous by skin contact, well...according to Wikipedia.  I have had them a while with no I’ll affects, but I am more aware now of the possible danger, would certainly point it out to others using the garden etc. They aren’t particularly easy to get to, so I’m pleased about that. 
  • TopbirdTopbird Posts: 6,974
    I’ve got some beautiful aconites. Some are summer flowering but the best are ‘Royal Flush’ - royal blue and very late flowering - started in September and still gorgeous. All well behaved, easy plants. They’re very near the front of the border growing around an apricot coloured rose under an amelanchier doing it’s autumn colour ‘thing’ and next to a yellow rudbeckia. It’s a wonderful late season blast of colour. 

    I think aconites are amongst the best garden plants. Have always grown them and always will. They’ve never caused problems to either human or feline visitors. I wear gloves when cutting them back but that’s the only nod of respect to their toxicity.
    Heaven is ... sitting in the garden with a G&T and a cat while watching the sun go down
  • Hostafan1Hostafan1 Posts: 31,588
    a1154 said:
    I have them in the garden too Christine and recently started worrying about toxicity. It’s not true you need to eat them, they are poisonous by skin contact, well...according to Wikipedia.  I have had them a while with no I’ll affects, but I am more aware now of the possible danger, would certainly point it out to others using the garden etc. They aren’t particularly easy to get to, so I’m pleased about that. 
    Where is the statistical evidence of folk actually being harmed by them? 
    How many folk handle aconitum in nurseries, load them on and off vans, in garden centres and in the gardens? 
    I've heard of one person who is believed to have died from handling them. Far more die from eating / handling peanuts. 
    All things are relative.
    Devon.
  • WilderbeastWilderbeast East YorkshirePosts: 1,309
    We have then in our garden, they were grown specially for "me" by the mother in law, I didn't realise they were toxic. Funnily enough she warned the wife and kids to stay away from them but not me, I suddenly feel nervous 😀😀
  • DovefromaboveDovefromabove Central Norfolk UKPosts: 77,331
    As long as she didn’t chop up the roots and make your favourite pasta dish 😉 
    “I am not lost, for I know where I am. But however, where I am may be lost.” Winnie the Pooh







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