Phytolacca decandra (poke, poke root, pigeon berry, red-ink plant, jalap).
Related species: P. americana (American nightshade, American spinach). A member
of the plant family PHYTOLACCACEAE. Large, red-stemmed herbaceous plant, with alternate
mid-green leaves and clusters of white flowers. The fruit is an attractive deep purple
berry, resembling a fleshy blackberry, containing a deep staining purple juice.
Animals most affected
Ingestion of fresh leaves during periods
of drought or food shortage. Poisonings are very rare.
Contains saponins which are irritant substances. The entire plant is toxic. Toxic
doses not known.
enteritis with violent diarrhoea, often
haemorrhagic, colic and abdominal pain;
death may occur in 1-2 days.
No antidote. Symptomatic care only: