Brassaia actinophylla (Scientific name)

General poisoning notes:

Australian umbrella tree (Brassaia actinophylla) is an ornamental shrub grown indoors in Canada. This plant caused toxic symptoms in a dog after it ingested the leaves. Experimental work on rats caused death after they ingested 3.2 g of leaf tissue over 7 days. Symptoms in the rats included extramedullary hematopoiesis in the spleen, with black tarry gastrointestinal content caused by blood (Quam et al. 1985).

References:

  • Mitchell, J. C. 1981. Allergic contact dermatitis from Hedera helix and Brassaia actinophylla (Araliaceae). Contact Dermatitis, 7: 158-159.
  • Quam, V. C., Schermeister, L. J., Tanner, N. S. 1985. Investigation for toxicity of a household plant - Australian umbrella tree (Brassaia actinophylla Endl.). N. D. Farm Res., 43: 15-17.
  • Spoerke, D. G., Smolinske, S. C. 1990. Toxicity of houseplants. CRC Press, Inc., Boca Raton, Fla., USA. 335 pp.

Nomenclature:

Scientific Name:
Brassaia actinophylla Endl.
Vernacular name(s):
Australian umbrella tree
Scientific family name:
Araliaceae
Vernacular family name:
aralia

Go to ITIS*ca for more taxonomic information on: Brassaia actinophylla

References:

  • Agriculture Quebec. 1975. Noms des maladies des plantes du Canada/Names of plant diseases in Canada. , Quebec City, Que., Canada. 288 pp.
  • Alex, J. F., Cayouette, R., Mulligan, G. A. 1980. Common and botanical names of weeds in Canada/Noms populaire et scientifiques des plantes nuisibles du Canada. Revised. Agric. Can. Publ., Ottawa, Ont., Canada. 132 pp.
  • Bailey, L. H., Bailey, E. Z. 1976. Hortus third. Revised. MacMillan, New York, N.Y., USA. 1290 pp.
  • Scoggan, H. J. 1978, 1979. The flora of Canada. Nat. Mus. Nat. Sci. (Ottawa) Publ. Bot. 7(1)-7(4). 1711 pp.
  • Van Wijk, H. L. 1911. A dictionary of plant names. Martinus Nijhoff, The Hague, The Netherlands. 1444 pp.
  • Victorin, M. 1964. Flore Laurentienne. 2nd ed. Univ. Montreal, Montreal, Que., Canada. 952 pp.

Geographic Information

Plant or plant parts used in or around the home.

References:

  • Bailey, L. H., Bailey, E. Z. 1976. Hortus third. Revised. MacMillan, New York, N.Y., USA. 1290 pp.
  • Boivin, B. 1966, 1967. Énumération des plantes du Canada. Provencheria 6. Nat. Can. (Que.) 93: 253-274; 371-437; 583-646; 989-1063. 94: 131-157; 471-528; 625-655.

Image or illustration

Images: Brassaia actinophylla - Google Search

Toxic parts:

  • Leaves

References:

  • Quam, V. C., Schermeister, L. J., Tanner, N. S. 1985. Investigation for toxicity of a household plant - Australian umbrella tree (Brassaia actinophylla Endl.). N. D. Farm Res., 43:15-17.

Notes on Toxic plant chemicals:

Chemical analysis (Quam et al. 1985) revealed that leaves contain oxalates and saponins as well as some cardiac glycosides and alkaloids.

Toxic plant chemicals:

  • Oxalate

References:

  • Quam, V. C., Schermeister, L. J., Tanner, N. S. 1985. Investigation for toxicity of a household plant - Australian umbrella tree (Brassaia actinophylla Endl.). N. D. Farm Res., 43: 15-17.

Animals/Human Poisoning:

Note: When an animal is listed without additional information, the literature (as of 1993) contained no detailed explanation.

Dogs

General symptoms of poisoning:

Notes on poisoning:

A poodle that ingested Australian umbrella tree leaves suffered from vomiting, leucopenia, anorexia, and ataxia. The leaves were found to contain 0.9%-1.5% oxalate crystals by weight (Spoerke and Smolinske 1990).

References:

  • Spoerke, D. G., Smolinske, S. C. 1990. Toxicity of houseplants. CRC Press, Inc., Boca Raton, Fla., USA. 335 pp.

Humans

General symptoms of poisoning:

References:

  • Mitchell, J. C. 1981. Allergic contact dermatitis from Hedera helix and Brassaia actinophylla (Araliaceae). Contact Dermatitis, 7: 158-159.

Rodents

General symptoms of poisoning:

References:

  • Quam, V. C., Schermeister, L. J., Tanner, N. S. 1985. Investigation for toxicity of a household plant - Australian umbrella tree (Brassaia actinophylla Endl.). N. D. Farm Res., 43: 15-17.

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