This is the time of year when homeowners perform yard cleanup. While most cattlemen are aware that various yard “trimmings” are toxic to cattle when ingested, neighboring homeowners in progressively urbanizing states may not be.

Stan Smith, Ohio State University Extension, says it behooves cattlemen to get to know their neighbors and share such seasonal concerns. He adds, for instance, that in the spring as little as ½ lb. of discarded yew trimmings consumed by a 500-lb. calf can be fatal. There is no antidote.

As spring progresses and new plants begin rapid spring growth, additional vegetation with the potential to harm livestock will emerge, Smith says. For more on plant toxicity, go to