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Lily of the Valley (Convallaria majalis)

Fans of the hit show Breaking Bad will know the Lily of the Valley. This small and pretty little plant looks innocent at first but is actually very toxic. Let's look at the science and find out more!

Physical Description and Behavior

These herbaceous plants can be as much as a foot tall. They have 1 to 2 leaves that can be as much as 10 inches long and can have as much as 15 flowers on it. The berries that this flower produces are small and bright red.

The striking part about this plant are the flowers, which fuse at the base, and look very similar to a bell. They are usually white, rarely a pinkish color, and are less than an inch in diameter. All of the plants do not seed, and actually are all clones of each other.

While it is used for perfumes and other industrial practices, every part of the plant is considered to be poisonous. While you are not likely to die as a result due to it being poorly absorbed orally, it can still cause some major issues. Overdose can cause nausea, vomiting, stupor, and even cardiac arrhythmias. The leaves alone can be a minor skin irritant.

Habitat and Location

This flower is very common as a garden plant in the Northern United States as well as in some parts of Eastern Canada, where it has been introduced. It is also found all throughout Europe, and even some small parts of Africa, Asia, and Russia.

While this plant prefers partial shade, it can live in full sunlight as well as full shade. It spreads quickly, which is why some people may refer to it as a weed or invasive species.

Learn some more about this garden plant by watching the video below:

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