Beware of this dangerous plant - giant hogweed

edited on 23 Jul 2019 at 15:37 in General

I took this photo on Saturday of giant hogweed growing either side of a bridleway. It is at grid ref TQ 191 384 near Lyne House in Surrey. I have reported it to Surrey council and asked for it to be removed as it is a severe hazard to walkers, cyclists, horse riders and dogs. More information about its dangers here http://www.nonnativespecies.org/?pageid=152 Please be on the look out for it. We had to get off and walk very carefully between the plants. It is marked on Open Cycle Map here: https://www.openstreetmap.org/#map=17/51.13328/-0.29863&layers=C

Touching the plant will cause your skin to blister when exposed to sunlight. 

It is obviously more likely to be a hazard to those riding off-road but it grows in a number of areas in the south east of England usually near a stream or river, so you could see it near the side of a road. It is similar to cow parsley but grows to twice or three times the size.

Surrey County Council responded saying:

"Thank you for your enquiries regarding the giant hogweed along bridleway Newdigate 183. We are aware of the situation along this bridleway and we cut and spray the giant hogweed along this bridleway annually. This year the area officer has requested that the hogweed be sprayed twice, this was sent to our contractors on 12/07/19. The contractors will deal with this when they are next in the area."
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