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Bushman’s Poison

I do not know if this shrub has been identified correctly.  Also known as  – Poison Bush

Native to Africa, but widely grown as an ornamental plant in India because of the profuse white flowers that are fragrant.  The latex of the plant is used by tribes in Africa to poison the tips of the arrows.  However,while  all parts of the plant are poisonous, the black seeds that follow the flowering is said to contain the highest amount of the toxin.

The small five petal flowers are white, tinged with pink. Flowering occurs mid February onwards.  And leaves are thick, dark and stiff.

Though fragrant and beautiful, it has been recommended that the plants are not planted in school campuses.

Picture taken in Lodhi Gardens, New Delhi

Botanical name: Acokanthera oppositifolia    Family: Apocynaceae (Oleander family)

5 responses »

  1. I wonder if birds eat the seeds and insects drink the nectar.

  2. hi radha,
    i came across the singapore cherry tree today and was reminded of your comment on my blog from some time bacvk when you were searching for a tree with small white flowers. did you identify it? could it be the singapore cherry?

  3. Not too sure whether I’ve seen this plant, Radha. Thanks for the comment on my blog. The pictures of zedoary are from our homestead at Haflong and the turmeric is from my mother’s garden, also at Haflong. At Guwahati I hardly have any space so I grow turmeric in pots…mostly for the leaves that I use for mutton/chicken rendang..


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