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Lilies & Cats

PlontyPlonty Posts: 3

Inspired by James Wong on the Great British Revival I bought 50 Lily bulbs and then yesterday someone wrote in to Gardeners Question time to say that Lilies are toxic to cats.  My research on the Internet suggests that a small amount of pollen on a cats fur will be ingested when they are grooming and will kill them. Why wasn't this mentioned on the program?

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  • hogweedhogweed Posts: 4,053

    Probably because lots of plants are toxic to humans or animals.

     

    'Optimism is the faith that leads to achievement' - Helen Keller
  • mollismollis Posts: 151

    I grew Lilies for years and had a cat and never had a problem...However, if you are worried just snip off the pollen carrying stamens and all will be well.  image

  • mollismollis Posts: 151

    Probably not happy - never done it myself and never felt the need to. But if someone is worried about their cat that is an option. image

  • ButtercupdaysButtercupdays Posts: 4,539

    You can now buy pollen free lilies - I got some today a my local GC. Miss Lucy and Elodie are very pretty, I've seen them at Tatton Show. I noticed the absence of warning in the programme and was surprised that no-one in the production team had picked up on it, it has had a fair amount of publicity.

    I have some lilies in the garden , well out of the cats' way, like martagon lilies growing in long grass, where they won't walk. I am going to try some tall regale in pots too, at the back of a border, but wouldn't use short 'patio' lilies in an area much frequented by my cats. It just wouldn't be worth the risk for me.

    www.hartsnursery.co.uk/Pollen-Free-Lilies/?page=2 has some varieties to look out for.

  • Mark 499Mark 499 Posts: 380

    I think most cases of poisoning have been from cut flowers indoors rather than from plants growing in the garden, there is also some confusion on the subject as some sources say only the pollen is harmful others say the entire plant , some say only true lilies are poisonous others say any type of Lily.

  • Mark 499Mark 499 Posts: 380

    Lilium (members of which are true lilies) is a genus of herbaceous flowering plants growing from bulbs, all with large prominent flowers. Lilies are a group of flowering plants which are important in culture and literature in much of the world. Most species are native to the temperate northern hemisphere, though their range extends into the northern subtropics. Many other plants have "lily" in their common name but are not related to true lilies.

  • DovefromaboveDovefromabove Posts: 87,944

    I came across someone who was convinced that Daylilies  (Hemerocallis) were poisonous to cats - nothing I could do to convince her otherwise - I even ate a bud in front of her to show they were edible for humans and also showed her the Latin names and explained that they were not the same.  She dug them all up and binned them. image

    In some cultures the word for lily is used to mean flower e.g. Matthew 6:28  is referring to wild flowers, but the word lily is used in the English translation. Genuses etc were not understood back then.


    Gardening in Central Norfolk on improved gritty moraine over chalk ... free-draining.





  • DovefromaboveDovefromabove Posts: 87,944

    We are Pansyface image


    Gardening in Central Norfolk on improved gritty moraine over chalk ... free-draining.





  • Hostafan1Hostafan1 Posts: 34,877

    Where's Steve the Gardening Vet when we need the professional opinion?

    COME BACK STEVE. WE MISS YOU. 

    Devon.
  • Hostafan1Hostafan1 Posts: 34,877

    IMHO.

    Given how many gardens have lillies, how many are sold as cut flowers and the appros 7 - 8 million cats in UK. I think if this was a real danger we'd have heard of lots of dead cats by now?

    Just a thought,

    I prefer lillies to cats so I'll keep the flowers and avoid having a cat. ( although my neighbour's 9 cats roam freely around to no ill effect.

    Devon.
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