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Poisonous cherry trees

Updated November 21, 2016

Cherry trees are also known by the scientific name Prunus serotina and are members of the Rosaceae family. Also known as the black cherry or wild cherry tree, this plant causes plant poisoning if consumed.

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Human potential

Humans who ingest the cherry tree often suffer from adverse effects. The twigs, stems, seeds and wilted leaves of this tree are poisonous. Cherry tree poisoning symptoms include spasms, weakness, excitement, seizures, gasping , coma and dilated pupils. Many people suffer from respiratory failure and die after consuming part of the cherry tree. The fruit from the cherry tree is safe to eat and is often used in jams and deserts.

Animal potential

Animals that ingest the cherry tree in large quantities often suffer from symptoms of plant poisoning. Grazing animals such as goats, cattle and horses are the most likely victims. Cherry tree poisoning causes respiratory failure, vomiting, diarrhoea, decreased blood oxygen, slow heart rate, seizures, coma and death.


Consuming flowers, stems, buds, twigs, seeds or leaves, can cause adverse effects in humans or animals. Choking and allergic reactions often occur with plant ingestion. The advice of a doctor or veterinarian should be sought to avoid complications.

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About the Author

Tracy Hodge has been a professional writer since 2007. She currently writes content for various websites, specializing in health and fitness. Hodge also does ghostwriting projects for books, as well as poetry pieces. She has studied nutrition extensively, especially bodybuilding diets and nutritional supplements.

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