View Full Version : Can sheep eat Magnolia leaves ??

Birman Babe
26th April 2010, 01:10 PM
Doing heaps of pruning around the place and have some large brances of Magnolia I would like to give to the sheep (small lots at a time).

I have googled and only found that its not poisonious to goats. Would it be the same for sheep ?

26th April 2010, 07:08 PM
Magnolia is poisonous to stock. So it would be better to pile it up to dry and burn it at a later date. Stack it in the garden, where the sheep can't reach it. Or mulch it and put it in the compost.

26th April 2010, 08:17 PM
Just a comment there - not disagreeing with you Inger - but I have a number of Magnolia trees on my property and having had the horses have a good chew on the bark and the sheep graze the paddocks where there could be leaf fall, I have never had a problem. On the other hand, I would never deliberately feed it to them and having recently pruned the lower branches, I kept the stock out of those paddocks until I had disposed of it onto my burning pile - oops - which also had the horses and sheep in recently. I suppose they weren't interested as there was decent grass feed in the paddock and no need to dismantle the burning pile. Obviously be careful but I don't think they would eat it in preference to other feed if it is available.

27th April 2010, 09:05 AM
We have Magnolia & Camelia down our driveway which the sheep keep well trimmed.

The Kats Place
27th April 2010, 09:18 AM
NO! don't let them, why take the risk? Have you ever seen a poisoned animal die?

27th April 2010, 01:04 PM
If goats can eat Magnolia, it is head to see how it is going to knock over sheep. I have yet to find anywhere in my searches an article saying Magnolia is poisonous.


A few leaves here and there don't seem to be a problem but as with most things, I wouldn't ask them to clean up a pile of it. If in doubt - leave it out is a good motto.

28th April 2010, 10:07 AM
We also have a magnolia tree in an orchard the sheep graze sometimes. I'm not sure that they really take much notice of the leaves - maybe eat the odd one - even when they are hungry.

3rd May 2010, 07:42 PM
Our sheep love the leaves from Magnolia grandiflora and Magnolia virginiana, either fresh or dried. I don't recall seeing them eat anything from our deciduous magnolias. In fact, there are very few of our ornamental trees the sheep do like.

3rd May 2010, 08:05 PM
linda (and others) ..... the problem with poisons is that the dose is important, so eating just enough to not kill them won't, but if they get to like the stuff then if they eat just enough to kill them, then they will die or at least get sick. So none is a good policy if you can manage it.
Another thing is that it can sometimes take a long time for the poison to work. Cattle with acorn and oak leaf poisoning can take about a week before they start dieing.
Also .... the time of the year is another factor. Some plants are more poisonous at certain growth stages than at other times.

So, BB ..... if your animals are going to die of starvation without the trial food (whatever it might be) then try it cautiously. If they are not starving then try to not purposely feed it to them.

Birman Babe
3rd May 2010, 09:27 PM
Its not that my sheep are starving, just that we burn all our rubbish out in their paddock and hubby has been going mad pruning everything & I am running around like a man chook checking to see theres nothing poisonous going out these coz the sheep do get into it. Anyway, we put the magnolia branches out over 3 days, they ate it & are still here to tell the tale ....

4th May 2010, 09:40 AM
We had our sheep in the section next door and have a large magnolia tree over hanging the fence. They use to literally climb the fence to get at it so we fed them the pruned branches. None of them got sick, we later ate them (the sheep that is lol) and they were fine and so were we.
We were also told the rosemary would kill them as well, as it did to some prized heifers according to our vet, but they devoured the plant and now I have to buy a new one.

Just our pennies worth. :)

4th May 2010, 05:13 PM
We were also told the rosemary would kill them as well, as it did to some prized heifers according to our vet, but they devoured the plant and now I have to buy a new one.

Pre-flavoured, how handy! [}:)]

4th May 2010, 06:00 PM
And my cattle cleaned up the fallen oak tree with all its spring leaves, back in October, and they are all still going strong too!

4th May 2010, 07:33 PM
Sue, very possibly there are fewer tannins in spring oak leaves, so moderately safe. Because of the reported toxicity of oak, it is one tree that I have not permitted to be grown here (we have enough problems with the cypress), and when grazing elsewhere is something that needs constant checking.

5th May 2010, 03:49 PM
my sheep always ate the leafs of the magnolias and they didn't fall death [:)] they mostly ate the fallen leafs and made a crunchy sound...[:D]

7th May 2010, 03:10 PM
I avoid feeding my lot (goats) anything I'm not certain about. I'm paranoid to a point. After sitting with Tumnus when he ate whatever it was he ate and watching him almost vomit himself inside out I don't plant anything that could be a danger, especially not near a fence line.

Luckily most of the established shrubs and trees here are either not toxic to them or are back far enough from the fence that they won't become part of the smorgasboard that is the goats diet. The only dumb thing I did was plant an Almond tree a bit near the race so although they can't reach the tree, they can get to the leaf fall.....
We have some camelia in the back garden... hell we have such a mix in the garden I have a feeling someone bought a bulk load of plants and bunged them in. I've seen some people feeding the flowers of the camelia to stock, just as a 'treat' one here, one there sort of deal, not a bulk lot all at once.
I wouldn't do it though.
'If in doubt, chuck it out'. That saying works for stuff in the fridge as well:rolleyes:[;)]


Lake Rotoiti Magic
10th May 2010, 08:35 AM
Diary farmer over the road, lost 2 cows through eating the branches a neighbor had cut down and left in the paddock. No worth the risk.