The Q&A Archives: Mountain Laurel Poisonous?

Question: Are Mountain Laurel's poisonous? I have friends that say

Answer: Kalmia latifolia, commonly called Mountain-laurel, is poisonous to several different animals, including horses, goats, cattle, sheep, and deer, due to andromedotoxin and arbutin. The green parts of the plant, the flowers, twigs, and pollen are all toxic, and symptoms of toxicity begin to appear about 6 hours following ingestion. Because it is considered an ornamental plant rather than an edible plant, and because you would have to consume a great deal of the plant in order for it to be toxic, and because most landscapes do not have resident horses, goats, cows, sheep or pet deer, the caution is not generally listed on the label.

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