Which popular garden plants are harmful to cats?

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Many want to spruce up their gardens in the spring, but if you have pets, you should keep these out of their reach:
• Shrubs: They are common but poisonous to animals– specifically azaleas and hydrangeas. The American holly’s leaves and berries are poisonous to dogs, cats and horses.
One of the most dangerous shrubs is Lily of the Valley; just chewing a few leaves can cause coma, cardiovascular damage, or even death.
• Annuals: As soon as the frost passes, many home gardeners want to add a splash of color here and there to brighten up surroundings—with short-lived plants like marigold, lantana, nicotiana and sweet pea—all toxic, as are the seeds and roots of four o’clock and morning glory.
• Bulbs: In some of these plants, only the bulb may be toxic, but others have poisonous foliage, tubers or roots and flowers. These include amaryllis, daffodil, elephant ears, iris, lily of the valley and tulip. Avoid lilies, especially, if there are cats in the area. The tubers of most lily varieties are poisonous to felines and can cause irreversible kidney damage if ingested.
• Perennials and wildflowers: These include black- eyed Susan and many varieties of ferns and pokeweed, as well as kalanchoe, flax, Jack-in-the-pulpit, larkspur and foxglove.
• Fruits and vegetables: While cooked potatoes are safe for a pet—and, in fact, often used in pet foods– the danger lies in potato sprouts and green potatoes, which contain a high level of solanine glycosides. Eating green potatoes or sprouts can cause diarrhea, vomiting, and in severe cases, cardiac arrest and paralysis for an animal. Others to be avoided are tomatoes, onions, grapes and avocado.
• Trees: Larger, more difficult to get rid of with more potential parts, tree can carry toxins in their foliage, bark, sap, flowers, roots and fruits or seedpods. The black locust, Sago palm and elderberry are trees that are entirely poisonous to animals. The horse chestnut and buckeye tree produce nuts that are toxic to most animals.

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