Non-toxic plants

Is Scarborough Lily Toxic For Cats?

Is Scarborough Lily Toxic For Cats
Written by Clair Chesterman

No, the Scarborough lily is not toxic for cats. It is named by the American Society for the Prevention of Cruelty to Animals (ASPCA) as one of the non-toxic plants for dogs, cats, and horses. No toxic elements that can harm cats were found in Scarborough lilies.

While this plant is non-toxic to cats, this does not mean that you can allow your cats to regularly nibble on them.  

Can Cats Eat Scarborough Lily?

Cats have been known to consume small amounts of Scarborough lily. Even a tiny bit won’t have a negative impact on them. Cats shouldn’t, however, consume large quantities of Scarborough lily or any other plant. Being carnivores, they are unable to digest plant matter in any way. Because of this, they will feel queasy.

Symptoms like vomiting and diarrhea may indicate that your cats have indigestion. The illnesses will eventually subside once the plant particles have been eliminated from their bodies.

If you have Scarborough lilies at home, be careful of using plant care products on them. There are some products that may leave traces of toxic chemicals on plants. It can be dangerous for your cats if they ingest these toxic residues.

What is Scarborough Lily?

The Scarborough lilies, also known as Cyrtanthus elatus, are bulbous perennials that grow in clumps of strap-shaped leaves and erect stems with umbels of sizable tubular or funnel-shaped flowers on each. It is also commonly called fire lily or George lily.

Scarborough lily flowers are available in a variety of colors, including bright red, orange, yellow, pink, and white. The stems can reach a height of two feet. They can be grown fairly easily in a warm, sheltered, and frost-free environment. They can also be grown in glass-enclosed pots. These perennial plants bloom in the late summer or early fall.

Scarborough lily is endemic to Cape Province of South Africa. It belongs to the plant family of Amaryllidaceae and has gained the Royal Horticultural Society’s Award of Garden Merit.

Keeping Cats Away From Scarborough Lily

Some cats find the Scarborough lilies to be delicious. They chew the leaves, trample the soil, tip the pots, and generally make a mess.

To deter them from your plants, use particular sounds, textures, and scents. Wrapping the pot and soil in aluminum foil may deter cats from looking through plants because cats dislike the crinkly sound and feel of the material.

You can try to cover the soil in citrus rinds to discourage cats from eating your plants since they don’t like the scent of citrus. If you don’t want to strew bits of fruit around your plants, you can also spray apple cider vinegar or vinegar diluted in water on their leaves.

Plants to Avoid For Your Cats

If you are a cat owner and unsure if the plants growing in your yard are harmful to your cats, check out this list of toxic plants for cats. You can also check our list of non-toxic plants for cats.

About the author

Clair Chesterman

Clair Chesterman is a professional cat breeder having her own cageless CFA and CCA Registered cattery & fostering company FluffyMeowPaws in Eugene, Oregon. Clair is a plant enthusiast too and she made in-depth research on toxic and non-toxic plants for cats.