10 Indoor Plants That May Be Toxic For Toddlers (2023)

Decorating the house is a way to make it feel more homey. One way to do this is with flowers and plants. They can also bring a bit of the great outdoors inside. Because of this, be it year round or for a particular season, 66 percent of American households have at least one houseplant, according to Terrarium Tribe.

Plants that come in a variety of sizes, some with flowers, and others that come in to survive low temperatures. None of which need to be worried about if there are no small children in the house. But if there are little ones in the home, parents need to know which plants they have or are considering that may be toxic for toddlers.

According to Healthline, indoor plants reduce stress, boost productivity, and improve the quality of the air inside. Factor in that they can add a pop of color or change the whole look of a room, it is not surprising that houseplants are as popular as they are.

But when those plants become an attractive nuisance for toddlers, it may be time to relocate or rehome them. It simply is not worth the stress of trying to keep little ones from attempting to put leaves or flowers in their mouths, specifically if said indoor plants are considered toxic if ingested.

RELATED: What To Do If Toddler Ingests Something Toxic

Here are some indoor plants that may be toxic for toddlers.

10/10 Easter Lily

10 Indoor Plants That May Be Toxic For Toddlers (1)

While Easter lilies are a beautiful flower that would add elegance to any room, they are also toxic.

According to Garden Guides, every part of the Easter lily is toxic if ingested. From the stem to the leaves, the petals and the pistil, every bit is toxic.

As such, they are an indoor plant that should be kept out of the home until parents can trust that their toddlers will not be tempted to put the flower, or any of its greenery, in their mouths.

9/10 Pothos

10 Indoor Plants That May Be Toxic For Toddlers (2)
(Video) 10 Pet & Child friendly House plants | Indoor plants | #petfriendlyplants #childfriendlyplants

A simple yet fantastic plant to add some life into a room is the Pothos. But because of its toxic nature, it does not make for a good houseplant for those in a home with toddlers.

According to ABCClean.com, the Pothos in small quantities will cause irritations to the body if ingested. Those irritations include:

  • Burning of the mouth
  • Skin irritation
  • Lip swelling
  • Swelling of the tongue
  • Swelling of the throat
  • Vomiting
  • Diarrhea

With this just being a small amount of Pothos ingested, it is easy to see why they and curious toddlers do not mix.

8/10 English Ivy

10 Indoor Plants That May Be Toxic For Toddlers (3)

While it has the most beautiful shade of green, English ivy is very toxic to humans.

According to J&C Lawn Care, when English ivy is ingested it can cause serious health issues. Those issues include:

  • Vomiting
  • Diarrhea
  • Stomach issues
  • Breathing problems
  • Reduced muscle strength
  • Problems with coordination
  • Hallucinations

If English ivy is growing in a pot in the home it should be removed immediately. The health issues are not worth the risk.

7/10 Caladium

10 Indoor Plants That May Be Toxic For Toddlers (4)
(Video) 10 Toxic Houseplants for Kids and Pets

Caladium or Angel's Wing sounds and looks like a plant that would not cause an issue for anyone. But looks and names are deceiving, given that every bit of the plant is toxic to humans.

According to Children's Health Queensland, if Caladium is eaten, the negative effects of the toxins include:

  • Burning in the mouth and throat
  • Excessive salivation
  • Lips swelling
  • Tongue swelling
  • Swelling of the throat
  • Stomach irritation

No matter how big or small Caladium becomes, it should be removed from the home so that curious toddlers do not attempt to explore what the plant is with their mouths.

6/10 Philodendron

10 Indoor Plants That May Be Toxic For Toddlers (5)

Many people grow Philodendron in their homes because it gives the interior a tropical feel. But those with toddlers will need to find another way to make it feel like the tropics, given that Philodendron can cause problems if consumed.

According to Pistils Nursery, if Philodendron is eaten, the havoc the leaves wreak on the body include:

  • Oral irritation
  • Pain in the mouth
  • Swelling in the mouth
  • Swelling of the tongue
  • Lips swelling
  • Excessive drooling
  • Vomiting
  • Problems with swallowing

If toddlers put the leaves in their mouths there is no doubt that there will be medical intervention needed. As such, taking the steps to have the plant rehomed or choosing another houseplant entirely, is recommended.

5/10 Amaryllis

10 Indoor Plants That May Be Toxic For Toddlers (6)

With its beautiful flower colors and long stems, the Amaryllis is a favorite in many homes. But, if any part of the plant or the bulb are eaten, there could be serious health problems that result.


According to Gardener's Path, the toxins will cause health issues for humans that include:

  • Vomiting
  • Pain in the abdomen
  • Diarrhea
  • Tremors
  • Excessive drooling

For those who have toddlers that are into everything, given that every bit of the Amaryllis is toxic, it should not be a plant in the home.

4/10 Poinsettia

10 Indoor Plants That May Be Toxic For Toddlers (7)

It used to be believed that if poinsettias were eaten, they would be deadly to humans and animals alike. But as it turns out, the seasonal plant is only mildly toxic to both. Yet, it is still not a plant to have in the home with toddlers around.

According to Poison Control, if toddlers eat the leave or flower portion of the poinsettia, they reactions they will exhibit include:

  • Nausea
  • Vomiting
  • Diarrhea

If toddlers will be attracted to the different shades of red, pink, and white that the flowers can come in, it is best to skip poinsettias this holiday season. Or, choose the faux variety instead.

3/10 Oleander

Oleander is a plant that is generally not an indoor plant year round. But when the temperatures drop, many bring their oleanders indoors to keep them from freezing. And that is when issues may arise in the home when toddlers are present.

According to Colorado State University, ingesting any part of the oleander will invoke these symptoms:

(Video) 10 Toxic Houseplants That Are Dangerous for Children and Pets #shorts #subscribe #houseplants

  • Difficulty breathing
  • Cardiac arrhythmias
  • Rapid and weak pulse
  • Weakness
  • Collapse
  • Death

It can take only one leaf to cause great damage to toddlers, per the publication. Because of this, oleanders should not be brought into the home under any circumstances when little ones are present.

2/10 Daffodils

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Daffodils look harmless enough. And with their delicate flower, they make a gardener's heart sing in the spring when the bloom. But underneath that fragile facade is a flower that is toxic to humans.

According to Wiley Online Library, if daffodils are eaten by humans, the poor health results experienced include:

  • Vomiting
  • Diarrhea
  • Nausea
  • Abdominal pain

As such, if daffodils are going to be grown, they need to be kept completely out of the reach of toddles so that they remain safe while the beautiful flowers bloom.

1/10 Sago Palm

10 Indoor Plants That May Be Toxic For Toddlers (10)

Many like the look of the sago palm given its small stature. But that small stature can be problematic to health if any part of the plant is ingested.

According to ScienceDirect, if sago palm is eaten, the ill-effects to be expected include:

  • Vomiting
  • Liver damage
  • Seizures
  • Depression
  • Coma
  • Death

While it can be fun to have a palm indoors, it is not worth the risk that comes to toddlers if they were to decide to ingest any part of the plant.

(Video) 10 Toxic Poisonous Indoor plants | Harmful House plants

Source: Terrarium Tribe, Healthline, Garden Guides, ABCClean.com, J&C Lawn Care, Children's Health Queensland, Pistils Nursery, Gardener's Path, Poison Control, Colorado State University, Wiley Online Library, ScienceDirect


What is the most toxic indoor plant? ›

The most common toxic indoor plants are dieffenbachia (Dumb Cane), philodendron (Philodendron), and aloe vera (Aloe Vera). These plants contain a chemical called calcium oxalate raphides or “raphides,” which can cause mouth, throat, nose, eyes, and skin irritation in humans.

Are house plants toxic to children? ›

The good news is that most houseplants are safe for infants and toddlers. “Even if they put a small piece of a poisonous plant in their mouth, it typically don't taste very good, so a child will usually spit it out and will very rarely go for a second helping,” Friedman says.

What are the harmful plants give examples? ›

Highly poisonous plants: plants to destroy or remove
  • Castor oil plant (Ricinus communis) ...
  • Coral tree (Erythrina genus) ...
  • Common or pink oleander (Nerium oleander) and yellow oleander (Thevetia peruviana) ...
  • Deadly nightshade (Atropa belladonna) ...
  • Golden dewdrop (Duranta erecta) ...
  • Rhus or wax tree (Toxicodendron succedaneum)
29 Jan 2021

What leaves are poisonous to children? ›

Let's begin with the first toxic common garden plant on our list.
  • Bluebell. If any part of the bluebell plant or bulb is ingested, it can cause harm and sickness. ...
  • Hydrangea. ...
  • Foxglove. ...
  • Poison Ivy. ...
  • Lily of the Valley (Convallaria Majalis) ...
  • Daphne. ...
  • Daffodil.
4 Jan 2019

What plants are toxic to kids? ›

Poisonous plants include:
  • Azalea (Rhododendron)
  • Foxglove (Digitalis)
  • Hydrangea (Hydrangea macrophylla)
  • Jerusalem cherry (Solanum pseudocapsicum)
  • Lambkill (Kalmia angustifolia)
  • Lily-of-the-valley (Convallaria majalis)
  • Mountain laurel (Kalmia latifolia)
  • Nightshade (Solanaceae)
9 Jul 2019

Which indoor plant is not good for health? ›

Philodendron. No other group of plants is as widely used indoors as philodendrons, but they are poisonous to humans and pets. Eating them can cause burning and swelling of lips, tongue, and throat, along with vomiting and diarrhea. Like ivy, philodendrons have a trailing habit, so keep them far from the floor.

What is the most toxic plant? ›

The oleander, also known as laurel of flower or trinitaria, is a shrub plant (of Mediterranean origin and therefore, resistant to droughts) with intensely green leaves and whose leaves, flowers, stems, branches and seeds are all highly poisonous, hence it is also known as "the most poisonous plant in the world".

Are spider plants poisonous to kids? ›

The spider plant is an excellent choice for air purification, it's easy to grow, even in low light conditions and it doesn't need a lot of love. It is also completely safe for children and all pets.

Is aloe vera toxic to children? ›

The topical use of Aloe Vera in small concentrations is not associated with any significant side effects. It's interesting how this plant is praised for so many benefits, such as the relief of certain skin conditions, and yet, is considered a toxic plant for pets and humans if ingested.

What 5 leaf plant is poisonous? ›

Although the flowers of the Virginia creeper vine leave much to be desired to the human eye, they are an important resource for insects. Its fruit are an important food item for birds and small mammals, but they are toxic to humans.

Are Succulents poisonous to toddlers? ›

ARE SUCCULENTS POISONOUS & WHICH ONES? Kalanchoe and Euphorbia succulents are two succulents that can be toxic to humans. Still, as a general rule with all house plants, it's important to keep even non-toxic succulents out of reach of children and pets.

What trees are poisonous to children? ›

These poisonous trees and fruits may look appetising to babies and toddlers:
  • Daffodil bulbs (the bulbs look like onions but shouldn't be eaten)
  • Rhubarb leaves and raw rhubarb (can cause sickness)
  • Cherry laurel (poisonous, cherry-like fruits)
  • Mistletoe berries.
  • Ivy with berries.

How many plants are poisonous? ›

It has been estimated that more than 700 species of plants growing in North America have caused illness or death in humans and that more than three percent of all poisonings are plant-related.

Is aloe vera toxic to babies? ›

Aloe Vera is safe for use on any area of a baby's body, however special care should be taken when applying to the face. Be careful to avoid the eyes, mouth, nose, and ears.

Is pothos toxic to children? ›

Golden pothos (Scindapsus aures)

Golden Pothos is a poisonous plant and should be kept away from small children and pets.

Are philodendrons toxic to babies? ›

Philodendrons are one of the most commonly known houseplants, but also one of the most toxic. Also known as fiddle leaf figs, the leaves contain crystals made from toxic calcium oxalate. For adults, a bite out of a fiddle leaf won't kill you, but for children and pets, all philodendrons can be highly toxic.

What is the most toxic plant? ›

The oleander, also known as laurel of flower or trinitaria, is a shrub plant (of Mediterranean origin and therefore, resistant to droughts) with intensely green leaves and whose leaves, flowers, stems, branches and seeds are all highly poisonous, hence it is also known as "the most poisonous plant in the world".

Are any house plants poisonous to humans? ›

Philodendron (and Monstera)

This genus of plants is mildly toxic to humans, and toxic to both dogs and cats. Symptoms of exposure include: Oral irritation, pain and swelling of mouth, tongue and lips, excessive drooling, vomiting, and difficulty swallowing.

Are plants harmful in the bedroom? ›

Most plants will indeed release Carbon Dioxide and absorb Oxygen from the surrounding air while you're sleeping. However, this gaseous exchange over an entire night is minimal. They don't produce enough carbon dioxide to cause negative effects.

What happens if you touch a ZZ plant? ›

Symptoms: All parts of the plant are poisonous. If chewed or swallowed symptoms can cause immediate pain or a burning sensation and swelling of the lips, mouth, tongue and throat. Contact dermatitis may also occur in sensitive individuals.


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