In herbal medicine my leaves are used to treat fever, depression, and even heart disorders. I contain the sugar compounds convallarin and convallamarin, both of which influence the heart.

I am a good choice for mild heart problems, but for more serious heart issues digitalis (foxglove) is better.

While I love to help, I’m not always as gentle and innocent as I look.

For instance, it’s not a good idea to eat me; my stalk, flowers and berries are all poisonous, and eating a few of my aromatic white petals could give you a sudden heart attack.

And if you have a pet dog or cat, then I’m better left at the garden centre than taken home.

For our furry friends, even licking my pollen off their fur can be deadly. So be careful!