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View Diary: Action: Plant Milkweed Seeds (74 comments)

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  •  This is a great suggestion, but it needs to come (13+ / 0-)

    with a few warnings. Milkweed can be harmful to some animals, and it can cause health problems for humans:

    On Monday morning the opthamalogist examined me in his office and said I still had considerable corneal edema resulting from the corneal abrasions. I asked him how the milkweed could cause abrasions and he said in fact it was chemical burns from the milkweed toxin.
     

    Also:

    The three rules for all milkweed: 1. DO NOT EAT 2.DO NOT GET SAP ON SKIN OR IN EYES. 3. EDUCATE AND PROTECT OTHERS FROM #1 & #2.

    Milkweed was named after the milky sap which contains latex, its scientific name Asclepias is the name of the greek god of healing due to Milkweed's many medicinal uses. There are over 160 different types of Milkweed a few are toxic MOST ARE NOT. Milkweed is a know purgative (makes you vomit) even upon consumption of a tiny amount and the taste is horrible. This horrible taste is the major defense of the Monarch against predators, the plants also contain varied amounts of a cardenolides which can cause harm if ingested in large amounts. Studies show to be harmed by eating toxic milkweed you must consume many leaves. The only research we could fins was provided by farmers that mistakenly fed it to their livestock... up to .1% - 2% of their bodyweight of whorled milkweed ( A TOXIC variety) was necessary to cause harm. Their paper states that animals would avoid this weed and this type is the most dangerous. "Whorled Milkweed" is not one we would ever promote or distribute. As stated previously NOT ALL MILKWEED IS THE SAME. Some is toxic and some can be dangerous under certain extreme circumstances. The facts of this paper state that while typically avoided, silage ( Cut plants fed to livestock ) pose a threat as the animals have no choice but to eat what is provided if no other suitable grazing is available. We AGREE if you starve your animals and force them to eat food laced with milkweed especially known toxic varieties there will be problems as a result of your actions.

    I was raised in the country, and I was taught to be very careful around milkweed.

    I don't want to throw a wet blanket on your efforts because they are very noble and I support them -- just urging a little caution to those who aren't familiar with the harmful effects.

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