On a recent trip to Yelm, Washington I stopped by a local food co-op and plant nursery. A classic activity of mine, of course I picked up a few new exotic plants to add to my apartment’s ecosystem. One of my favorite new ones is Brugmansia, or Angel Trumpet.
The flower caught my eye from the moment I saw it, with its large sweeping flowers that looked like trumpets. The plant is affectionately called Angel Trumpet sometimes, and the flowers come in a variety of colors like yellow, orange, pink and red.
The plant may have been beautiful at first, but in Yelm we were staying in a hotel room and after leaving it there for several hours, we returned to the most beguiling perfume-like scent. Caught off guard, I thought someone must have been in our room without us knowing it, but we discovered the Brugmansia had opened a new white flower, which exploded with the most incredible smell that was filling the room. It felt like the beach, a vacation, a dream.
After enjoying this plant for a few weeks, I did some research on its care and uses. I was quite surprised to learn this plant has quite the history, and has actually been banned in a few places because of its high toxicity to humans and pets. The leaves, stems and flowers are all wildly poisonous, and many people over the years have tried to consume it for its hallucinogenic effects. This would be a massive mistake-each plant has a different toxic makeup and it’s impossible to tell how much of each plant would be poisonous to a person.
Fully versed on the toxicity, I moved the plant to a higher location to keep it away from my dog. I don’t tend to make a habit of eating or tasting my exotic plants, so the beauty is worth it.
The plant grows quickly, almost an inch per week, and I foresee tons of beautiful blossoms in its future.
Photos: Elizabeth Adan
Elizabeth Adan is a Freelance Writer, Publicist and Explorer. Aquaberry Bliss is a unique outdoor lifestyle site dedicated to expanding your world and inspiring your creativity. When Elizabeth isn’t traveling, you’ll find her writing, hiking or gardening. Find Elizabeth on Twitter @stillaporcupine and on LinkedIn.