"These Plants Can Kill." That's the skull-and-crossbones-bearing message that greets you when you walk into The Poison Garden, a carefully secluded section of England's popular Alnwick Garden. It was conceived in the mid 1990s by Duchess of Northumberland Jane Percy, who became fascinated by Italy's Medici poison garden and adopted the idea as a way to set Alnwick Garden apart. While choosing the plants that would live in her lethal nursery, Percy strove to make each one tell a story. She intermingled exotic plants with the poisonous ones visitors see every day—laurel hedge and belladonna, for example. A beautiful yellow flower known as Brugmansia, or angel's trumpet, ignites an LSD-like trip before it brings on a painless death. The seeds of the leafy plant Ricinus communis are used to make castor oil, but also contains the deadly toxin ricin. As part of an educational mission, the garden is also home to the plants of several legal and illicit drugs, including tobacco, marijuana, and the coca plant, which is used to make cocaine. To enter the garden, visitors must walk down a long tunnel, and they're forbidden from smelling or touching any of the plants. Explore the world of poisonous plants in the videos below.
The Poisonous Pitcher Plant
Learn about this dangerous Southeast Asian plant.
25 Of The World's Most Dangerous Places To Visit
There's no poison here, but there are plenty of dangers.
Written by Curiosity Staff October 5, 2016
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