© 2020

Handbook of Poisonous and Injurious Plants


Table of contents

  1. Front Matter
    Pages i-xviii
  2. Lewis S. Nelson, Michael J. Balick
    Pages 1-18
  3. Lewis S. Nelson, Michael J. Balick
    Pages 19-32
  4. Lewis S. Nelson, Michael J. Balick
    Pages 33-44
  5. Lewis S. Nelson, Michael J. Balick
    Pages 45-49
  6. Lewis S. Nelson, Michael J. Balick
    Pages 51-302
  7. Back Matter
    Pages 303-336

About this book


This third edition of the Handbook of Poisonous and Injurious Plants is created to assist the clinician in the initial response to the needs of a child or adult exposed to a poisonous or injurious plant. It lists common plants that might lead to the development of the symptom complex and describes the mechanisms of action of the implicated toxin, additional clinical manifestations, and specific therapeutics for each presentation. This truly comprehensive resource is botanically rigorous and complete with insights from both pharmacognosy and clinical medicine.

With its thorough references and full-color photos of hundreds of potentially toxic and injurious plants inside and outside the home, anyone who has an interest in plants will find this book useful outside in the garden or out in the wild.

This book will be of interest to botanists, horticulturists, and naturalists as well as hikers, gardeners, and all those who simply enjoy the wonders of nature and the great outdoors.


Poisonous plants Injurious plants Toxicology Phramacology Emergency medicine

Authors and affiliations

  1. 1.Department of Emergency Medicine and Division of Medical ToxicologyRutgers New Jersey Medical SchoolNewarkUSA
  2. 2.Institute of Economic BotanyThe New York Botanical GardenBronxUSA

About the authors

Lewis S. Nelson, MD is Professor and Chair of the Department of Emergency Medicine and Director of the Division of Medical Toxicology at Rutgers New Jersey Medical School in Newark, NJ. He is a member of the Board of Directors of the American Board of Emergency Medicine and a Past-President of the American College of Medical Toxicology. In addition to his clinical work in the Emergency Department at University Hospital in Newark, he is a senior consultant to the New Jersey Poison Information & Education System on human poisoning. He is the senior editor of Goldfrank’s Toxicologic Emergencies, currently in its 11th edition. The focus of his research in on the adverse consequences of opioids used either for pain relief or for abuse, with an emphasis on system development for prevention and treatment.

Michael J. Balick, Ph.D. is Vice President for Botanical Science, Director of the Institute of Economic Botany and Senior Philecology Curator at The New York Botanical Garden. For more than four decades, he has studied the relationship between plants, people and culture, the field known as ethnobotany, and floristics, the study of botanical diversity within a specific region. His research has included studies in the Amazon Valley, Central and South America, The Middle East, Southeast Asia and Pacific Islands in Micronesia and Melanesia. He currently holds adjunct teaching or research appointments at City University of New York, Columbia University, Fordham University, Harvard University, the Institute of Ethnomedicine and the National Tropical Botanical Garden. He is a member of the Board of Trustees of the American Botanical Council and Past-President of the Society for Economic Botany.  

Bibliographic information


“This book is written as a reference for clinical management. It could be used by students as well as practitioners who see high volumes of patients with these types of toxic ingestions. … It would also have value for toxicology fellows and students.” (Sheffey N. Massey, Doody's Book Reviews, January 8, 2021)