Friday, June 12, 2015

It's summertime! Choosing Non-Toxic Plants for your Balcony, Patio, or Yard

Guest blog post by Nancy Carson, Founder and CEO of Balcony Pets and the 
Apartment Pet Door™ 

How many times have you wandered around a nursery looking for plants but worrying about plant toxicity for your cat or dog?  The last thing you want to do is bring something home that would harm your furry family member!

According to the Humane Society, More than 700 plants have been identified as producing physiologically active or toxic substances in sufficient amounts to cause harmful effects in animals.
Poisonous plants produce a variety of toxic substances and cause reactions ranging from mild nausea to death.  Certain animal species may have a peculiar vulnerability to a potentially poisonous plant. Cats, for instance, are poisoned by any part of a lily.

Yesterday I was at the nursery on the hunt for plants that were pretty but not toxic to my cats. THIS time, I had my list with me!  I was looking for a climbing vine that wouldn't hurt my greens-loving kitty, Timmy.  Even though I grow lots of kitty grass on the balcony for him (which he loves), he also loves to chew on other plants.

Instead of frantically searching plant names on my iPhone in the bright sunlight, looking up toxicity information, I scanned the sheet of paper I had brought along, one that I printed out from the ....  I now keep this in my glove box in the car.

You can download and print the list at this link:  I  Keep this page in your car so you’ll have it when shopping for plants!

Confident with my list, I found a flowering vine called a 'Snail Vine,' something I had never seen before but it’s beautiful and will grow fast.  Many climbing plants are toxic to pets and this one isn't. It has beautiful purple flowers shaped kind of like snails.  The hummingbirds already approve!

So many flowering plants are dangerous to pets who love to chew on them.  But which ones?   The list is pretty long!

Have a fun, worry-free visit to the nursery or garden store!

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