Recognize this plant?
It’s gone wild in Eastern Ontario and municipal governments and townships are readying to go to war on it.
Wild Parsnip, was imported over a century ago and is considered a noxious weed much like Poison Ivy and Ragweed and it has really spread very quickly.
We have it on our acreage in West Ottawa, and started seeing it 3-4 years ago. I have dug it up; poisoned it, burned it and been burned by it too. When I was mowing it down with the riding lawnmower my mulch cover came off and I was covered in grass clippings — and that got a little itchy and uncomfortable for a while.
Lanark County had an optional spray program last year. This year, there’s no option. The municipality has declared war on it and they’re spraying whether you like it or not.
It stands at about 5-10 feet and is the smaller version of Giant Hogweed. If you get its sap on your skin and then spend some time in sunlight, the result can be a nasty burn and blisters.
This weed can also effect livestock if they ingest it or it gets in their eyes.
The sap contains a chemical that makes skin extra-sensitive to UV light much like celery and lime.
Last year, many towns and municipalities sprayed and cut the ditches, which in some cases is running wild with Wild Parsnip and Poison Ivy.
Lanark County will use a herbicide called ClearView.