Giant Hogweed About
With the start of school holidays nearly due, parents and children should be reminded about the dangers of Giant Hogweed, which is again showing along the footpath know as 'The Causeway', running between 'The George' public house and St Andrew's Church.
In the past BDC had tackled the source which was near The Chase in Shalford but dropped seeds into the stream, have been carried downstream towards the church.
[info from Dept for Environment Food & Rural Affairs]
Giant Hogweed (Heracleum mantegazzianum) contains toxic sap that can cause severe burns.
At 20ft tall with dinner table sized leaves Giant Hogweed is an impressive plant that was once planted in gardens. However, it is highly invasive and has spread throughout the whole of Great Britain, primarily favouring river banks but also other areas such as parks, cemeteries and wasteland.
The sap of Giant Hogweed contains toxic chemicals known as furanocoumarins. When these come into contact with the skin, and in the presence of sunlight, they cause a condition called phyto-photodermatitis: a reddening of the skin, often followed by severe burns and blistering. The burns can last for several months and even once they have died down the skin can remain sensitive to light for many years.