[poi-zuh n-woo d]


a tree, Metopium toxiferum, of southern Florida, that has compound leaves and yellowish, berrylike fruits and is poisonous to touch.

Origin of poisonwood

An Americanism dating back to 1715–25; poison + wood1
Also called poison tree.
Dictionary.com Unabridged Based on the Random House Unabridged Dictionary, © Random House, Inc. 2019

Examples from the Web for poisonwood

Contemporary Examples of poisonwood

  • The book's setting has drawn some comparisons to Barbara Kingsolver's The Poisonwood Bible.

    The Daily Beast logo
    Great Weekend Reads

    The Daily Beast

    March 13, 2011

Historical Examples of poisonwood

  • Poison sumach (Rhus vernix) is not the same as poisonwood, though sometimes the two are confounded.

    American Forest Trees

    Henry H. Gibson

  • The tree occurs in southern Florida where it is sometimes known as poisonwood.

    American Forest Trees

    Henry H. Gibson