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is this hogweed?

Discussion in 'Flora & Fauna' started by Steve M, Mar 16, 2012.

  1. Steve M

    Steve M Settler

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    Or not? I'm finding this a tough one to crack and am of course concerned about its family.

    [​IMG][​IMG]
     
  2. The Big Lebowski

    The Big Lebowski Bushcrafter (boy, I've got a lot to say!)

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    Hmmm.... Really need a bigger picture. Not sure about the leaf shape.
    Is it just me or does that look like small giant hogweed. Difficult to tell.

    This is normal hogweed.
    http://www.bushcraftuk.com/forum/showthread.php?t=86953&page=2&

    This is the key for giant hogweed.
    large plant, often over 2.5 m high (when mature)
    flowers in umbel shape, larger than 15cm in diameter
    flowers have more than 50 rays
    hollow stems are between 3-8 cm in diameter
    stems have stiff white bristles
    stems have spots or blotching, red or purple in colour
    large, lobed leaves up to 1m in size
    leaves compounded in three
     
    #2 The Big Lebowski, Mar 16, 2012
    Last edited: Mar 16, 2012
  3. The Big Lebowski

    The Big Lebowski Bushcrafter (boy, I've got a lot to say!)

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    Oooo... careful pal. I think that may be giant. Please go give any skin you had in contact with it a very good wash and move it somewhere safe.

    Stems have stiff white bristles, leaves compounded in three. Stems are green with extensive purple splotches and prominent coarse white hairs. Stems are also hollow, ridged and have a thick circle of hairs at base of leaf stalk.
     
    #4 The Big Lebowski, Mar 16, 2012
    Last edited: Mar 16, 2012
  4. Vulpes

    Vulpes Nomad

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    Pops always warned me about giant hogweed, but I never realised how horrible the rash is from the sap...google it!
     
  5. MSkiba

    MSkiba Settler

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  6. The Big Lebowski

    The Big Lebowski Bushcrafter (boy, I've got a lot to say!)

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    I'm no authority when it comes to hogweed, I've only been studying it a few weeks. Best be safe than sorry though until someone can 110% id it.

    Are the bristles stiff? (use a pen and bin it). I dont like the leaf cluster (looks like 3 lobes) or the fact that the stem looks hollow. Can you safely cut one open to have a look. I would personally bin the cutting implement too and stear well clear of any liquids from the plant. This is why I dont collect unless its 100% confirmed before removal.

    The hogweed I was looking at had very fine hairs, almost fluff and did not have the purple banding around the leaves that yours does.

    Hmmm. I would rather be wrong than right.
     
    #7 The Big Lebowski, Mar 16, 2012
    Last edited: Mar 16, 2012
  7. mrcharly

    mrcharly Bushcrafter (boy, I've got a lot to say!)

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    The purple splotches mostly occur on the main stem.

    those leaves look a little different from the giant hogweed I've seen.

    Do take care - i've had a 'chemical burn' from giant hogweed on my ankle. The blistering was about 50p diameter, 6mm deep. The bruising travelled right through my ankle joint and appeared a few days later in my toes.
     
  8. lannyman8

    lannyman8 Bushcrafter (boy, I've got a lot to say!)

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    OMG, that is some bad stuff.....:yuck:
     
  9. Steve M

    Steve M Settler

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    The bristles are soft and the cross section is that of an old school Star Trek badge.

    The more I look at it, the less likely it's hogweed, maybe there's none growing round here.
     
  10. The Big Lebowski

    The Big Lebowski Bushcrafter (boy, I've got a lot to say!)

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    I've sent a few pictures to a mate to clear up what it is, so If you dont have a reply on here, he should be able to help.

    Umbellifers are an interesting group, but not something one want's to get wrong in any way, shape or form.
     
  11. Harvestman

    Harvestman Bushcrafter through and through

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    That pic doesn't look like giant hogweed to me. The leaves of giant hogweed are very much more deeply incut, giving the leaves a very spiky appearance. Those leaves look much too broad. From the pics, I'd say ordinary hogweed is a fair bet.
     
  12. The Big Lebowski

    The Big Lebowski Bushcrafter (boy, I've got a lot to say!)

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    You may be right... It was the bristles that alerted me and the purple tinge around the leaves.

    And, it not looking anything like yesterdays hogweed. Best to be safe and all :)
     
  13. Ichneumon

    Ichneumon Nomad

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    The sap of Giant Hogweed contains chemicals that make human skin hypersensitive to the UV in sunlight, a condition called phytophotodermatitis. The resulting burns can be very severe. If it gets in the eyes it can cause blindness. If you should acidentally get the sap anywhere on your body you should get indoors PDQ! The same chemicals exist in many Umbelliferi but not at the high concentration of Giant Hogweed
     
  14. xylaria

    xylaria Bushcrafter (boy, I've got a lot to say!)

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    It is not giant hogweed. It is probably normal hogweed but dont eat it for tea yet. The absolute utter diffifing feature of normal hog weed this time of year it that the young shoots curl inwards before unfurling, that have soft down on them.

    Hogweed, giant hogweed, parsnip [including garden!!] and few others all cause rashes when the sap is on the skin and reacts with sunlight. Giant hogweed is by far the worst though. Generally the sap washes off quite easyly and it smells like roses when the reaction is occuring. Covering exposed skin for a few days also prevents quite a bit of damage. I regulary pick hogweed shoots and wild parnsip, just washing in a stream immedatly afterwards seems to work.
     
  15. Steve M

    Steve M Settler

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    Thanks for your advice all.
     
  16. wildranger

    wildranger Need to contact Admin...

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    That is hogweed (heracleum sphondylium) beyond a shadow of a doubt. I know the plant at a glance. They're the young spring shoots and some of them should still be just unfurling around now. I tried cooking them but they were awfully bitter. The stems should have coarse white bristles and the stems are often coloured purple towards the base. With the umbellifers, it's the ones with the really finely divided leaves that you have to be cautious with. Hogweed, once you get to know it, is easy to ID. Cheers
     
  17. Steve M

    Steve M Settler

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    Cheers wilderranger that's great news.
     

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