Giant hogweed Heracleum mantegazzianum
- Appearance: Large flowering plant up to 3 m in height, umbels of white flowers up to 80 cm in diameter.
- Growth: Found along rivers, on waste ground or in rough pastures, spread by seed.
- Impact: Public health risk – all parts of this plant produce phototoxic sap that cause skin sensitivity to UV light causing blistering, pigmentation and long-lasting scars. The ‘burns’ can recur for several years. Do NOT touch any part of this plant unless adequately protected.
- Pathway: Originally a garden ornamental plant that has spread or escaped into the wild.
- What to do if you see Giant hogweed for sale or other offences being committed: Make a report by following the guidance here.
- What to do if you see this plant in the wild: Record it with a photograph (where possible).