5 horrifying seeds you don't want growing in your garden
WHILE we're busy handing out seeds that will fill your garden with colour and delicious fruit and vegies, not everything that grows is safe to be eaten.
Telling the difference between freshly grown herbs and something less lovely is something perhaps gardening expert Costa Georgiadis could help you with?
Australia has a reputation for being populated by creatures designed specifically to ruin your day, so learning the same is true of our plant life shouldn't surprise anyone.
Also, like our slithering, crawling and biting friends, our dangerous flora are commonly found growing in our backyards.
So here are five plants you definitely don't want growing in your garden (but can brag about to foreigners on the internet).
5. Oleander (Nerium oleander)
Named for a passing resemblance to the olive Olea, oleander will start by irritating your skin and, if you're somehow able to eat enough of the horrible-tasting and bitter leaves, could cause fatal symptoms.
The effects on your stomach can be quite severe, especially if a child eats it.
Oleander is a common garden plant in Australia.
4. Angel's Trumpets (Brugmansia)
Angel's trumpets are an attractive flower resembling a colourful flared section of a trumpet.
While the seeds and leaves are the most potent, all parts of this plant contain toxic levels of compounds antagonistic to humans.
Angel's trumpets are common in parks and gardens around Australia (though they're on the "maybe-we-should-ban-this" list)
3. Strychnine tree (Strychnos nux-vomica)
The Strychnine tree is native to Australia and produces a lovely-looking orange-like fruit. The fruit is poisonous.
Sadly, so is the rest of the tree, even though it was used in medications until the sheer risk of it became pointless when safer alternatives become available.
This is why Australia has a reputation.
2. Deadly Nightshade (Atropa Belladonna)
Two to five berries can be fatal to an adult human though it only takes one leaf to be lethal. Those aside the root actually wins in terms of fatal potency.
It's the ability for nightshade to be mistaken for blueberries that makes it scary.
Like angel's trumpets, deadly nightshade isn't native to Australia, but it is commonly found in our gardens.
1. Gympie Gympie (Dendrocnide moroides)
The gympie stinger is native to rainforest areas in northern regions of Australia and is known for being covered in tiny hairs that cause pain like being hit with acid and electrocuted after only the tiniest of contact.
The pain from these stings can last for years.
We have better alternatives
How about some seeds that'll brighten you garden and build its soil instead?
We're giving away a free packet of seeds every day for three weeks, while stocks last.
The seeds will include a great selection of fruit and vegetables, herbs and flowers, allowing you to start planting a backyard patch bursting with flavour and colour.
All you need to do is cut out your daily coupon from this newspaper and take it to your local participating news-agent.
As well as giving you a great start to your garden, we're also giving one lucky reader the chance to win a day with outdoors guru Costa Georgiadis, who will help you plan and create your ideal vegie patch.