Guelder-rose

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Heather
Posts: 58
Joined: 11 Jun 2017, 16:23

Guelder-rose

Post by Heather » 29 Jul 2018, 16:04

Hi - I have one leaning (ever lower!) over Achillea's outdoor area, so wonder where it lies in the green / orange / red league. I also note your comments about hawthorn, which mentions leaves & berries, but not the flowers (except for their colour). Do the flowers also contain cyanide I wonder?

Thanks,

Heather

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Nina
Posts: 787
Joined: 16 Mar 2017, 11:22

Re: Guelder-rose

Post by Nina » 29 Jul 2018, 16:35

Hi Heather,

As I'm sure you know, Guelder Rose isn't a rose at all, but a Viburnum (Viburnum opulus). As far as I can see, the advice for Guelder Rose would be the same as our advice for other Viburnum species -- and that is probably not to feed, but definitely don't allow the tortoise to eat the berries. Here is our entry for Viburnum and I think there might even be a photo of Guelder Rose there.
https://www.thetortoisetable.org.uk/pla ... 13eibgnaM8

Re Hawthorn, the seeds are definitely toxic and contain amygdalin, which bonds with sugar and then turns to hydrogen cyanide in the small intestine. I found this on one site:
"Amygdalin decomposes into three parts. Hydrogen cyanide, glucose and benzaldehyde. Benzaldehyde, which tastes strongly of almonds, amaretto or marzipan is a common chemical in many young plants. The flowers of hawthorn, sloe and cherry all smell of benzaldehyde."
As far as I can see, benzaldehyde is not toxic, except in very large doses, so theoretically the flowers should be OK, but I don't know if they actually contain hydrogen cyanide as well as benzaldehyde.

I did find a site that said "The Folklore Society of Britain found that hawthorn blossom is the most unlucky. If brought into the house it would result in death." LOL, but that is just folklore. Still, I think I would err on the side of caution and not deliberately feed any part of the plant, just in case.

Nina

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lin
Posts: 536
Joined: 16 Mar 2017, 11:27

Re: Guelder-rose

Post by lin » 29 Jul 2018, 16:37

Hi Heather
We do have the entry for Virburnum to include the spp, all the species of Virburnum. Heres the entry and we do have the photo of the Guilder Rose in their but just havnt added the common name. We will do that when we get time.
https://www.thetortoisetable.org.uk/pla ... nt=522&c=4

Hope this is helpful
Lin

Heather
Posts: 58
Joined: 11 Jun 2017, 16:23

Re: Guelder-rose

Post by Heather » 30 Jul 2018, 15:48

Thanks both - yes very helpful. Mine aren't the 'snowball' flower type, but the more lax type - with open florets around the edge of a flattish inflorescence (if I'm using the term correctly!). I believe it's the wild version - I'm lucky to have several trees / bushes. Very pretty leaves / autumn colour & charming berries loved by birds. (How come birds cope I wonder?).

Regards the hawthorn - none really anywhere near Achilliea's pad, but petals might fly in the wind - so that's OK.

Brilliant help as always.

:)

Heather

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