Heracleum mantegazzianumQuick ID:
- A member of the carrot or parsley family, a perennial with tuberous root stalks.
- Stalks and stem are hollow, stems vary from two to four inches in diameter.
- May grow 15 to 20 feet tall, except for size it closely resembles cow parsnip.
- Has stout dark reddish-purple stem and spotted leaf stalks
- May colonize a wide variety of habitats but is most common along roadsides, rights-of-way, vacant lots, streams and rivers.
How It Got Here:
- Originally from Asia & introduced as an ornamental.
- Planted as a curiosity in European and North American private gardens early in the twentieth century.
Reasons for Concern:
- Giant Hogweed is a public health hazard due to it’s clear, watery sap which has toxins that cause photo-dermatitis.
- Skin contact followed by exposure to sunlight produces painful, burning blisters that may develop into purplish or blackened scars.
- Applicators must be careful with removal of this plant.