The Nature Conservancy of Canada is warning Canadians that one of the most dangerous plants in the country is about to bloom throughout Canada and that residents should use extra caution to avoid it. Giant hogweed is about to bloom in June and if you come in contact with it, it can cause a variety of injuries. Among these injuries are third-degree burns and even blindness.
Every summer, giant hogweed begins to grow throughout Canada. The plant appears throughout most of the country, though the Weather Network states that it has not been spotted in any of the Canadian territories. This year, the plant has already been spotted flowering in Ontario, British Columbia, Quebec, and the Atlantic Provinces.
This giant hogweed was first introduced to Canada through Asia and has thrived in the various climates across the country. The plant can reach up to fives meters in height and a lot of people often mistake the dangerous plant for wild parsnip and are unaware of the dangers that hogweed causes to the human body.
The plant is green in colour and when it blooms, it has white flowers on the top of the plant. The Weather Network describes the plant as being a larger version of Queen Anne's lace.
If the plant is touched, the sap can cause skin irritation, burns, scarring, blisters, and even temporary or permanent blindness if you get the sap in your eyes.
Now, with June around the corner, these plants are expected to blossom throughout the nation and The Weather Network is warning that if you spot this plant to stay far away from it and report your sighting to the Ministry of Natural Resources.
If you accidentally come in contact with this giant hogweed, you are supposed to wash the affected area thoroughly with soap and water. After the area has been washed, you should avoid sunlight for 48 hours in an attempt to stop the burns and blistering.
If you think that you were burned by giant hogweed, or show any symptoms of being in contact with giant hogweed, go see a doctor immediately.
CTV recalls an incident that occurred a few years ago, where five boys in England came in contact with the plant and were severely burned. In those cases, the had kids encountered the dangerous plant in public parks.