Is Monstera Toxic To Humans

Some of your indoor plants are just not safe if you have pets or young children, which is a sad but inevitable realization in the road of becoming a plant parent. While many common genera of houseplants are stunning to look at, many of them are moderately or seriously hazardous. Still others, when handled excessively, can irritate the skin.

The good news is that with enough preparation, you can determine which dangerous houseplants to stay away from, evaluate the risk to your family and pets, and still enjoy a lively and stunningly green collection of indoor plants.

Here are 10 toxic houseplants that, while we love them, should be used with caution if your children or pets will have access to them. A word of clarity, though, is in need before we proceed: “toxic is a relative term, and the severity of a reaction will depend largely on the level of exposure (amount consumed), which plant species, and the specifics of your pet. Some poisonous houseplants cause short-lived, acute symptoms (such as vomiting). Some can have more serious, life-threatening effects if swallowed in excess, while others only irritate the skin. This list is by no means intended to be comprehensive, so we strongly advise conducting additional research (ASPCA has a great database for pet owners).

Poisonous Houseplants for Pet Owners and Parents to Avoid

  • Starting with one of the biggest players, Philodendron (and Monstera) is a vast genus of tropical plants that is particularly well-liked for usage inside because of its great variety of growing habits, leaf shapes, and colors. Plants in this genus are poisonous to dogs and cats as well as somewhat toxic to humans. Oral irritation, soreness and swelling in the mouth, tongue, and lips, excessive drooling, vomiting, and trouble swallowing are all signs of exposure.

Are Monstera plants toxic to handle?

such a rule

Not simply for poison ivy, “Leaves of three, let it be!” Poison oak, a closely related species, with rounder, lobed leaves that resemble oak leaves and can come in groups of three or five. All plant parts, including the leaves, stem, roots, and flowers, contain an oil called urushiol that can bind to the skin in just a minute. If you suspect contact, wash all of your gardening equipment because it can also stick to clothing and tools. Although its pointed-oval leaflets are distributed in groupings of seven or thirteen, poison sumac belongs to the same family.

Stinging Nettles

More than two dozen chemical compounds that are present in stinging nettles can make skin swell, itch, burn, and develop blisters that can last up to 12 hours. This plant has fine hairs all over and pointy, jagged leaves that act as tiny needles to deliver the toxins to anyone who touches it. It can grow to about 6 feet tall.

Hyacinth Bulbs

Numerous types of bulbs, such as hyacinths, elephant ears, tulips, daffodils, and buttercups, might irritate certain people’s skin. Your hands may become irritated and red after touching them without gloves. When I worked at a greenhouse, I usually wore gloves, but after planting hyacinth bulbs, I once touched my eye, and it felt itchy and nasty.

Philodendron and Monstera Deliciosa

Popular houseplants include the philodendron, monstera deliciosa, caladium, dumbcane, and peace lily, all of which are members of the Araceae (arum) family. However: Calcium oxalate crystals on their stems and leaves are poisonous. Although they won’t damage your hands, if you touch your lips, mouth, or tongue after touching the plant, they may sting or irritate you. At its worst, Myers explains, it can feel as though your larynx is paralyzed. It may be beneficial to use gloves or wash your hands after handling these plants.


Poinsettias can be harmful to humans as well as animals if consumed. They can irritate human skin, along with other members of the Euphorbia family (including pencil trees and spurges). Fortunately, the majority of people simply feel slight annoyance. Additionally, while it is untrue that eating poinsettias can make you sick, it is still possible.

English Ivy

English ivy, which grows on the walls of many older homes, doesn’t bother everyone. However, if you have an allergy to it, you should prepare for redness, itching, and possibly even small blisters after touching it. The first time you encounter it, you might not respond, but after the second exposure, your body will become sensitive.

Which area of the Monstera contains poison?

a decorative climber that is planted in pots or in the garden. The roots of this stumbling climber frequently droop downward.

On a spike or spadix that is 20 to 25 cm long and covered with a hooded white bract or sheath called a spathe that is up to 30 cm long, the tiny flowers are tightly packed.

The rounded leaves have segments that are pierced throughout, usually between the margin and the midvein. The leaf is typically dark green, 25 to 90 cm long, and 25 to 75 cm broad.

Category of toxicity: 2 Consult a doctor right away if your lips or tongue swell, or if you are having trouble breathing or swallowing.

An decorative climber that is either cultivated in the garden or in a pot. The roots of this stumbling climber frequently droop downward.

Flowers: The tiny flowers are tightly packed into a 20 to 25 cm long spike or spadix called a spathe, which is encircled by a hooded white bract or sheath.

The leaves are spherical in shape and have segments that are pierced throughout, usually between the midvein and the margin. The leaf is typically dark green, 25 to 90 cm long, and 25 to 75 cm broad.

Fruit/Berries: The green fruit segments along the spike as it ripens to a cream color. The fruit tastes like pineapple and bananas when it is mature.

Symptoms: The plant contains calcium oxalate crystals in all of its components, which, when consumed or digested, can result in throat, mouth, lip, and tongue enlargement as well as an instant burning discomfort. Huge amounts of salivation and trouble breathing, swallowing, or speaking may result from swelling. Rarely do nausea, stomach pain, or severe gastric irritation develop. When the fruit is mature, it is considered edible, but it can also quickly develop urticaria or hives, a brief swelling and itching rash.

Is Monstera only poisonous when consumed?

All components of the Monstera plant, including the leaves, fruits, stems, roots, and flowers, are poisonous or toxic due to the presence of insoluble oxalate crystals in all 45 species.

The only fruit that is suitable for human consumption is a fully ripened Monstera Deliciosa fruit.

Other than Monstera, the majority of indoor Araceae plants likewise contain insoluble calcium oxalate crystals.

In a bedroom, is Monstera okay?

With good reason, the Monstera deliciosa has been crowned the “It” plant of 2018! With its striking Swiss-cheese-like leaves, it’s low-maintenance, easy to maintain, and certain to stand out in any room of the house.

Why are monstruas poisonous?

Because of their insoluble sharp or needle-like oxalate crystals, or insoluble calcium oxalate known as raphides, monstera are toxic to cats, dogs, and other pets. When chewed or swallowed, they will embed in mucus, causing intense stinging or burning in the mouth, throat, or lips.

The Monstera plant’s leaves, fruits, stems, roots, and flowers are all poisonous or toxic. And since all 45 species are affected, even M. adansonii, Split-leaf philodendron, and Monstera deliciosa are poisonous to cats, dogs, and other animals.

We are aware that fully ripened Monstera deliciosa fruits are safe to eat and not poisonous. However, avoid giving them to your dog or cat because they might not be the healthiest option.

The majority of the other houseplants in the Araceae family, excluding Monstera, also contain insoluble calcium oxalate crystals. These plants consist of:

  • stupid cane (Dieffenbachia spp.)
  • Asian evergreen (Aglaonema)
  • Calm lily (Spathiphyllum spp.)
  • Caladium lily
  • Philodendrons
  • Huge Taro (Alocasia antiquorum)
  • Flowering Flamingo (Anthurium spp.)
  • Animal ears (Caladium spp.)
  • Pothos

But because the concentration of these crystals varies from plant to plant, the intensity of the symptoms vary as well. For instance, the symptoms from a dumb cane will be more severe.

If you are already frightened, it may help to know that Monstera plants are only moderately toxic, meaning they are not as dangerous as Vinca or Azalea (Rhododendron spp.). Not even in the same league as an amaryllis, a sago palm, some lilies (Lilium sp.), a snake plant, etc. They are hazardous or destructive nonetheless.

Last but not least, Monstera has a level 3 or 4 of severity. Level 1 plants are typically extremely hazardous and may result in serious illness or even death, but level 2 plants are just mildly poisonous and only cause vomiting and digestive problems.

Can you eat monstera fruit?

The fruit of Monstera deliciosa can reach a maximum length of 25 cm (10 in) and a maximum diameter of 35 cm (1.22.0 in), and it resembles a green ear of corn coated in hexagonal scales. These platelets or scales come off the fruit as it ripens, giving off a potent and enticing aroma. It has been said that the scent is a cross between pineapple and banana. [16] The fruit is safe for consumption by humans. [17]

Calcium oxalate structures resembling trichosclereids and raphides are frequently seen in the fruits of Araceae (Arum family) plants. Unripe fruit from M. deliciosa that has these crystalline structures resembling needles can irritate the mouth.

Fruits mature during a period longer than a year.

[12] The fruit’s lowest scales begin to turn yellow as it begins to mature. The green fruit’s stored starch is transformed into sugar as it ripens, giving it its sweet flavor. It works in a manner similar to how banana fruits ripen. When the fruit is halfway ripe, you may smell the pungent smell it emits. The smell gets stronger as time goes on as the fruit continues to ripen. But as soon as it’s fully ripe, the aroma swiftly fades. [17] [18]

Monstera plant safety for young children?

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Lower elevations of Central and South America are frequent locations for the popular aroid indoor plant monstera. It is a member of the Araceae family and can reach heights of 6 to 8 feet. But since many gardeners also have pets and kids at home, they frequently worry about the toxicity of their houseplants.

The Monstera genus was classified as poisonous by the ASPCA. The majority of the plant-like stems, leaves, and roots contain calcium oxalate crystals, which can cause minor irritation to severe reactions in humans and small animals.

Does Monstera deliciosa purify the air?

Although plant-covered facades are all the rage among architects, you don’t need to completely cover your building in greenery to enjoy their advantages. NASA researchers started looking at how houseplants might clean the air in space stations in the 1980s and discovered that some plants are far stronger at removing toxins and contaminants.

It has been shown that a number of plants can filter out airborne toxins like benzene, trichloroethylene, and formaldehyde. According to NASA, there should be one air-purifying plant every 100 square feet of space.

One of the best philodendron plants for lowering air pollution has been demonstrated to have large leaves, including the fashionable monstera plant. Simply avoid letting little children or dogs consume the leaves because they are poisonous. A reasonably simple plant to grow that purifies indoor air is aloe.

Snake plant, Peace Lily, English ivy, Spider plant, Gerbera Daisy, Dragon Tree, and Bamboo are some additional top purifying plants.

Are people poisoned by snake plants?

Snake plants are widespread in homes and offices because they thrive in dim light. In some cultures, they have even been employed as natural treatments. But consuming the plants can make you sick. The plant’s toxin has a numbing effect that may cause the tongue and throat to enlarge, and large dosages may induce nausea and vomiting. Dogs and cats are more susceptible to the plants’ toxicity, and they may experience nausea, vomiting, and diarrhea.

Is philodendron poisonous to people?

The peace lily, a common low-light houseplant, is poisonous only if a significant amount of the leaves are consumed. If you have pets or young children, enjoy the white blossoms and dark green leaves from a distance, such atop a bookshelf. The hue of a peace lily’s leaf deepens as it gets older.

Conditions for growth: Bright, indirect light to low light, with space between waterings.


Do you intend to bring bulbs inside? Many spring bulbs, including hyacinths and daffodils grown inside, are poisonous to people and animals if consumed. Eating the bulbs, which resemble shallots or onions but are actually poisonous, can result in severe gastrointestinal issues, high blood pressure, irregular heartbeats, and even death. Daffodils should be kept up high on a shelf or counter where they won’t be disturbed, or you could try growing them in a terrarium.


Philodendrons are the most popular indoor plant species, however they are toxic to both people and animals. Eating them may result in vomiting, diarrhea, and burning of the lips, tongue, and throat. Keep philodendrons away from the ground because, like ivy, they tend to trail.

Are jade plants poisonous to people?

The jade plant is toxic to horses, dogs, and cats, as well as occasionally mildly toxic to humans, like many species of the Crassulaceae family.

Are all indoor plants toxic?

The advantages of having indoor plants in a home are numerous. They are beautiful to see and frequently make a space look better. Herbs are among the plants that can be both therapeutic and edible. Children who learn how to care for indoor plants are taught responsibility and may develop a lifelong interest in gardening. A excellent approach to feel more connected to nature is to have plants in your house.

It’s critical that everyone in the household is aware of potential risks connected to indoor plants. While many common houseplants are benign, some of them can be harmful to humans or animals. In a home with only adults and older children, this might not be a problem. Avoiding plants that are even somewhat hazardous is a good idea if there are young children or pets in the house.

Research Plant Safety Before You Buy

This article lists twelve typical houseplants that are harmful to both people and animals, along with warning signs of poisoning and examples of secure substitutes. There are other plants that could be kept in homes but are harmful as well. Before purchasing a houseplant, it is wise to research its safety.