Wednesday, September 8, 2010

No Go with the Angel's Trumpet

Don't you hate it when you think you've found the perfect plant for a difficult spot, and it turns out to be poisonous.  I'm looking for a large shrub or small tree with either colorful or interesting foliage, and maybe if I'm lucky, even some flowers.

I thought an Angel's Trumpet (Brugmansia) would fit the bill:

Photo by  Carol Foil

But alas, according to my trusty Sunset Western Garden Book all parts are poisonous if ingested.  The little ones are getting better, but I still can't trust them completely.  (Just today they were ripping off random vegetation on our walk and popping pieces in their mouths.)

Here's the area we want to revamp.  The cornerstone plant will replace our crazy banana tree.

I actually don't mind the banana tree, even if the banana pods are a little funky-looking, but it gets so ratty in the winter (looks completely dead with the first hint of frost), and it attracts way too many bees.  My four-year-old will miss it, but this is my domain-- the grown-up patio.

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