Home Medicinal Plants Lily of the valley

Lily of the valley

by Josephine Andrews
Published: Last Updated on 183 views


The lily of the valley grows in Europe, North Asia and North America. In Central Europe it is often found in shady deciduous forests.


The lily of the valley belongs to the lily family. The approximately 30 centimeters high perennial with rootstock has two to three parallel-veined leaves. The plant is particularly popular because of its flowers, which appear between April and May: they are bell-shaped, white and exude an intoxicating scent. Between July and August, the flowers develop into pea-sized, red fruits, each containing two blue seeds.

Toxic parts

All parts of lily of the valley are poisonous, especially the flowers, berries and leaves. It contains heart-active substances and saponins, which have a blood-dissolving effect.

Possible symptoms

Touching a lily of the valley can irritate the skin and eyes. Oral intake causes nausea , diarrhea, cardiac arrhythmias, dizziness and chest tightness. Typical for poisoning with lily of the valley is that initially the blood pressure rises high and the pulse accelerates. In the further course, however, the breathing deepens and slows down. Sometimes cardiac arrest occurs.

First aid

The red berries taste very bitter, so not much is usually eaten. Remove any plant debris that may still be in the mouth. Subsequent fluid intake makes sense. Avoid milk, however, because it can promote the absorption of the poison.

In any case, consult a doctor, especially if you experience any of the above symptoms – and if more than three berries have been ingested. The poison information center can also provide helpful first aid tips.

useful information

In homeopathy , lily of the valley is considered a helpful remedy for cardiac insufficiency and nerve-related cardiac disorders. Homeopathic remedies based on lily of the valley are also said to help with water retention in the tissue (edema).

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