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Home gardeners urged to remove poisonous Nandina

Posted By Beth Farmer, Wednesday, January 15, 2014
Updated: Wednesday, January 15, 2014

The Association of Northwest Landscape Designers (ANLD) and other local horticulturists are encouraging gardeners to remove Nandina (also known as "sacred bamboo" or "heavenly bamboo") from the landscape.

The recommendation comes as word has spread about a 2009 report from the University of Georgia. When dozens of cedar waxwings were found dead in Georgia, investigators determined the cause to be Nandina berries. The berries were discovered to contain cyanide and other alkaloids that produce highly toxic hydrogen cyanide, which is extremely poisonous to all animals.

Nandina produces bright red berries, which attract cedar waxwings, American robins, Northern mockingbirds and other birds that depend on winter fruits to survive. In Nandina's place, gardeners are encouraged to plant a native species such as evergreen huckleberry or Oregon grape. There also exist non-fruiting varieties of the shrub.

Read the University of Georgia report

Read more on OregonLive

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