X-post: Poisonous plants and childcare
Note: X-posted to aus.family and aus.gardens.
.... so our C&K centre has to sign a doc saying that there are no poisonous
plants on the premises .. and as a botanist (with a very different area of
specialty) they've turned to me for guidance.
From what I understand, we just have to sign off that there are no poisonous
plants on the place....the problem is that there doesn't seem to be an
official list of plants that we can sign off against, ..... and pretty much
any plant could kill you if you eat the wrong bit, don't prepare it properly
or you just eat enough of it.
I can tell them to sign off against what's on the Qld Health list of
poisonous plants and fungi (well nearly - there's cestrum growing through
the back fence from the neighbours yard and its a right bugger to get rid
of ), but what about the variegated croton and the Rhoeo which can cause
mild reactions. ....or even the green tomatoes which can contain a poisonous
substance (saponins)? Not sure about the Strelitzias by the front door
either..... Where does one draw the line?
Part of me thinks that its a matter of teaching kids not to eat stuff they
find in the garden (without asking first - like my kids do) but then I worry
about the kids that just don't get that concept (Bear in mind that the C&K
kids are aged between 3.5 y and up to 5.5 y).
(I also remember tutoring a poisonous plants class at uni and having a 19 yo
student pretend to eat a castor oil seed right after I emphasized that all
the plants were poisonous so to wear gloves, not touch their faces and to
wash their hands well and often. ... so I guess there's no accounting for