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Lilies of the Valley

luxtontluxtont Posts: 2
Got lots of these in my garden. I’ve read that they can cause death if ingested. My grandchildren play in the garden. Should I be getting rid of this plant ?


  • josusa47josusa47 Posts: 3,530
    Half the plants in our gardens are more or less toxic.  Children need to be taught not to eat things they find growing.  Until they are old enough to understand that, they need to be supervised.
  • ButtercupdaysButtercupdays Posts: 4,497
    My brother and I both survived a garden with lily of the valley :)
    Seriously, how likely are your grandchildren to eat it? If they are tiny or really unable to understand not to eat the plants, then I would hope they would never be left without supervision.
    Many garden plants are poisonous to a greater or lesser degree and it is never too early to start teaching them to avoid possible dangers, but also about the good plants and about plant names.
    I grew up from about the age of 4 with a little book of wildflowers and I used to look for them whenever we went out, both my favourites and the ones I hadn't seen before. It was a very well thumbed book and  even now when someone on here asks about a wildflower ID the name usually pops into my head without thinking!
  • Butterfly66Butterfly66 Posts: 931
    edited May 2020
    You have to decide what you are comfortable with but as said there are lots of plants which are potentially toxic to a greater or lesser degree.
    I grew up with lily of the valley, foxgloves, laburnum and lupins in the garden. All are toxic and one of my favourite activities was making mud pies and I used all of the flowers and seeds of these plants in my culinary creations. I was taught from a young age not to eat anything from the garden. Even edibles like strawberries were forbidden and they were all grown in a dedicated area so if we were tempted all the fruit there was safe except maybe the risk of upset tummies from underripe fruit. Of ourse the temptation there was because we knew they were food and tasted good.
    Im looking forward to my granddaughter making mud pies in our garden and we have all those plants here. I can’t imagine that she will be in the garden on her own whilst small and by the time she is we will have taught her not to eat anything Its only usually babies and toddlers who like to put anything and everything into their mouths.
     If you have a garden and a library, you have everything you need.”—Marcus Tullius Cicero
    East facing, top of a hill clay-loam, cultivated for centuries (7 years by me). Birmingham
  • JennyJJennyJ Posts: 10,070
    I also survived childhood in a garden with lots of lily-of-the-valley. Teach the little ones to never put things from the garden in their mouths unless an adult gives it to them (wouldn't want to deny them peas or tomatoes straight from the plant) and always wash hands before meals/snacks, and they'll be fine.
    PS welcome to the forum!
    Doncaster, South Yorkshire. Soil type: sandy, well-drained
  • FairygirlFairygirl Posts: 54,353
    Small children should be supervised, and taught. It's quite simple, as @josusa47 and the others have said.
    My children grew up with all sorts in the garden and a pond.
    They're still here...last time I looked anyway  ;)
    It's a place where beautiful isn't enough of a word....

    I live in west central Scotland - not where that photo is...
  • GreenbirdGreenbird Posts: 237
    This always makes me smile,

    Where are all these children who eat random berries and flowers from the garden? You struggle to get most kids to eat a grape if it has a slight mark on it. I think the generation of picking and eating fruit from gardens was thirty years ago.
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