Madison News

 

Toxic weed warning

Toxic weed warning

Wisconsin wildlife officials are warning people to be on the lookout for a couple of poison plants.

DNR plant ecologists say poison hemlock and wild parsnip are becoming more common along roadsides.

The sap from poison hemlock contains neurotoxins that can be absorbed through the skin; the story goes that Greek philosopher Socrates died after drinking poison hemlock.

Wild parsnip sap, meanwhile, can cause severe skin rashes, blisters and discoloration.

Poison hemlock has smooth stems with blotches or purple spots, tiny five-petal white flowers and triangular, lacy leaves.

Wild parsnip has small yellow flowers and diamond-shaped leaflets similar to celery.

 

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