How to Deal with a Poisonous Adenium (desert rose)

Adenium (desert rose)

An evergreen Adenium (desert rose) is very popular with people all over the world. In some places it’s even considered to be sacred due to its uniqueness and longevity.

Meanwhile, the tribes of Africa - where it grows in the wild - use the sap of the plant and sometimes its pollen to get poison for their arrows. This poison is so toxic that it can even kill elephants before they are able to pass several kilometers.

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Hence, some articles on the Internet warn their readers that the sap of the plant is rather toxic. It penetrates through the skin and can cause intoxication. The symptoms of poisoning occur within 12-36 hours: malaise, dizziness, nausea, and vomiting. To avoid poisoning all the work with this species must be carried out in gloves.

Precaution measures must be taken indeed. But bear in mind that it is not such a big danger. It’s extremely difficult to extract ouabain from the plant. That is why some animals eat it without any bad consequences - it is impossible to poison yourself if you just chew flowers or stems of plants.