People have asked me – Is the Red Bird of Paradise toxic?
Yes all the bird of paradise flowering bushes are poisonous. The orange and yellow flowers of the Caesalpinia pulcherrima, make a stunning bush.
The Mexican Bird of Paradise tree has yellow flowers that look velvety and delicious!
The Yellow Bird of paradise plant has clusters of yellow flowers with a long red stamen.
But DO NOT eat any part of the 3 Bird of Paradise plants.
All of these gorgeous desert bushes belong to the genus Caesalpinia.
Caesalpinia is a genus of flowering plants in the legume family, FABACEAE. The fruit of these Bird of Paradise desert bushes is a long, flat seed pod.
The bean pods are toxic! Watch small children and pets around your Bird of Paradise shrubs.
The level of toxicity for the bird of paradise plants is low however, the leaves contain hydrocyanic acid. The toxins in the bean pods are tannins. The role of tannins in many species of plants is to protect the plant from predators.
Ingesting any part of these bird of paradise plants can cause gastrointestinal irritation. Nausea, diarrhea and vomiting are symptoms of bird of paradise poisoning.
While the Red, Yellow and Mexican Bird of Paradise plant’s toxins are not life-threatening; however, diarrhea and vomiting can produce dehydration. Those symptoms should be taken seriously and you should seek medical treatment.