Calla Lily

Poisoning caused by consumption of plant material from the Calla Lily.

Poisonous Ingredient 

  • oxalic acid  
  • asparagine  
  • a protein found in this plant

Note: The roots are the most dangerous part of the plant.

Where Found 

  • calla lily genus Zantedeschia

Note: This list may not be all inclusive.


  • body as a whole       o burning in mouth       o swelling of tongue       o swelling of mouth  
  • eyes, ears, nose, and throat       o burning in throat  
  • gastrointestinal       o nausea and/or vomiting       o diarrhea

Home Treatment 

  • Wipe out mouth with cold, wet cloth.  
  • Give milk to drink.

Before Calling Emergency 
Determine the following information:

  • the patient’s age, weight, and condition  
  • the name of the product (ingredients and strengths if known)  
  • the time it was swallowed  
  • the amount swallowed

Poison Control, or a local emergency number 
They will instruct you if it is necessary to take the patient to the hospital. See Poison Control centers for telephone numbers and addresses. Bring the plant with you to the emergency room for identification.

What to expect at the emergency room 

  • Treat the symptoms.

Expectations (prognosis) 
Oxalate plants may cause swelling severe enough to block the airway but this is very rare.

Johns Hopkins patient information

Last revised: December 6, 2012
by Simon D. Mitin, M.D.

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All ArmMed Media material is provided for information only and is neither advice nor a substitute for proper medical care. Consult a qualified healthcare professional who understands your particular history for individual concerns.