Hi Jeremy,I wonder if you can give me some guidence regarding the poisonous effects of the dreaded laburnum.In my garden,the seeds have been falling off the tree and landing in the birdbath.I have never considered before the possibility that this could effect our avian friends.But,one morning,we found the bodies of a couple of bluetits who had a nearby nest.They had been drinking out of the birdbath…So,could the water have been poisoned by the seeds?One was actually found in the birdbath itself!Your advice would be very welcome. Omissions? While laburnum trees are much prized and are grown in many gardens for their beautiful yellow flowers, it should be noted that they are poisonous. I was angry with my foe: I told it not, my wrath did grow. Just half a dozen of the little round black seeds can kill a small child. Laburnum, (genus Laburnum), genus of two species of poisonous trees and shrubs belonging to the subfamily Faboideae of the pea family . You could look at the animals as well: if you have a normal amount of creatures in the pond (work out the Big Pond Score for your pond) then its probably not doing too much harm. The wood of Scotch, or alpine, laburnum (Laburnum alpinum) has a striking greenish brown or reddish brown hue and takes a good polish. Children should be warned not to touch or eat any part of the tree, which could give them severe stomach upset. Let us know if you have suggestions to improve this article (requires login). Other species, whilst not necessarily poisonous have large root systems that will eventually interfere with your liner pond; the poplar varieties, willows and sycamores are examples to avoid. It’s incredibly ornamental, bearing hanging, pea-like flowers in shades of pink as well as bright yellow, followed by long seedpods. Can be grown as a specimen tree or trained for arbors, pergolas or espaliers. However, and there are quite a few ‘howevers’ coming here, I wouldn’t rush to get the axe out straight away! Plant chemicals like cytisine are generally interpreted as a form of chemical defence and, as far as I understand it, they work by making the insect (or whatever is doing the eating) use up energy to de-toxify them. Laburnum – a short tree with hanging branches, yellow flowers, and poisonous seeds In the above lines, the poet says that he saw a Laburnum tree whose leaves were yellow. It is ideal for cabinetmaking and inlay and was at one time the most prized timber in Scotland. Tree Size: 20-30 ft (6-9 m) tall, 6-12 in (15-30 cm) trunk diameter. The laburnum, also called the goldenchain tree because of its showy blooms, reaches a height of 5.4 to 7.5 m (18 to 25 feet) at maturity and spreads out about 3.9 to 5.4 m (13 to 18 feet) wide. All parts, including the seeds and berries, are extremely poisonous. They contain the alkaloid cytisene. Snails love to eat laburnum leaves, and this often causes problems for young trees. Failure of laburnum trees is common due to winter water-logging of the roots in heavy soil. Susceptible to twig blight, canker, leaf spot, aphids and mealybugs. The trees have beautiful hanging yellow flowers in spring, which gives rise to their nickname 'the golden chain tree'. Sometimes, just eating a small amount of seeds may cause no bad effects, but other times it has been known to be fatal. I also noted masses of bees on the Laburnum flowers so it must have some nectar value too…[remember…’even the pollen from the flowers is poisonous’]. How Dangerous Is It? Concerned about the poisonous nature of laburnum seeds I have been fishing them out daily and have cut back one over-hanging branch. When she is chewing twigs, if she is anything like our dogs, she is only gnawing them up and not eating any of it anyway. But it could of course be one of many other problems. Remove root suckers if trained as a small tree as well as the seedpods, which consume plant energies and are poisonous. If she put one in her mouth it might not be a problem and most children won't eat a handful of something like that. I wouldn’t assume that the mode of action in insects, invertebrates, birds and mammals will all be the same for alkaloids. Common Name(s): Laburnum, Golden Chain. In this one we replaced it with a lovely acer instead. The Laburnum Tree – Beautiful and Poisonous: While there are no reported deaths from the Laburnum Tree in one hundred years the tree carries that label. Must be around 30 years ago I heard a gardening "expert" on the radio say that laburnum trees can kill hedging and plants beneath it. All parts of Common laburnum are extremely poisonous, but the pea-like seeds are particularly attractive to children. This article was most recently revised and updated by, https://www.britannica.com/plant/laburnum, British Broadcasting Corporation - Laburnum. We got rid of laburnum trees in the gardens of both houses we've lived in. Laburnum anagyroides, common laburnum All parts of the tree are poisonous: roots, bark, wood, leaves, flower-buds, petals, and seedpods. It reaches full size after about 15 years. Laburnum is primarily only available within its natural range in Europe. On hearing this we cut down a young tree on a newly purchased property. N. O. Leguminose. This can be caused by the main toxin cytisine, which can prove fatal if large amounts have been consumed. I’m not a biochemist but scanning the scientific papers on the subject this is related to nicotine, and apparently it’s used in medicine as a nicotine substitute for people trying to kick the habit. Breaking into the seeds is poisonous. 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