Kids warned to avoid gi­ant hog­weed plant

Nasty weed dis­cov­ered

Rutherglen Reformer - - News - Dou­glas Dickie

Par­ents are be­ing warned to keep their chil­dren away from gi­ant hog­weed this sum­mer.

The plant has been spot­ted in sev­eral ar­eas around Ruther­glen and Cam­bus­lang, es­pe­cially near the River Clyde, East Kil­bride Road, Green­lees Road and in the Cathkin area.

Of­ten de­scribed as the UK’s “most dan­ger­ous plant,” re­ports of gi­ant hog­weed have in­creased due to warmer con­di­tions.

The weeds can cause burns and blis­ters to the skin and can even lead to hos­pi­tal­i­sa­tion.

South La­nark­shire Coun­cil say they have no record of gi­ant hog­weed on their land, but that does not mean it is not found in Ruther­glen or Cam­bus­lang.

Head of fa­cil­i­ties, waste and ground ser­vices, Alis­tair McKin­non, said: “The coun­cil’s ground ser­vices teams work dili­gently each year to con­trol the pres­ence of gi­ant hog­weed grow­ing on coun­cil land, es­pe­cially where it is iden­ti­fied on public open spa­ces and recre­ational ar­eas.

“Ar­eas of gi­ant hog­weed, re­ported and iden­ti­fied, will be checked each year for re­cur­rence and treated ac­cord­ingly.

“No gi­ant hog­weed is iden­ti­fied in our data base of in­va­sive weeds in the Ruther­glen and Cam­bus­lang area.

“We would warn ev­ery­one, es­pe­cially chil­dren, to be aware of this weed and the burns it can cause on con­tact.”

Trade group, the Prop­erty Care As­so­ci­a­tion (PCA), has ad­vised peo­ple to take pre­cau­tions.

If con­tact is made with the plant, the af­fected area should be cov­ered from sun­light and the skin washed with wa­ter as quickly as pos­si­ble.

The plant can grow up to three me­tres tall with a 20cm thick stem and a large, white, um­brella-shaped flow­er­ing head.

It has sharply ser­rated or di­vided leaves which can grow up to 2m wide with bris­tles on the un­der­side.

The stem is usu­ally cov­ered in bris­tles and has blotchy purple mark­ings.

Green gi­ant Hog­weed tow­ers over Re­former ed­i­tor Dou­glas Dickie

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