I have a plant in the garden that’sÂ on the federal most wanted list but it is definitely preferred “dead” and not “alive”.
I answered the door yesterday and was greeted by the hort police. Actually, it was a neighbor Pat Egan giving me a heads-up about a plant which we and other neighbors share called Hogweed. Pat recently had learned that the plant which is known for its distinctive “bear claw” like leaves and its showy display in July with its multi-flowered whiteÂ blooms often at the top of a 10 foot spike (Better to seed themselves)Â is on a federal hit list.
Not only is the plant invasive, but it also secretes a sticky substance that is worse than poison ivy and according to some sources if rubbed in the eye can cause severe damage. The Michigan Department of Agriculture has issued an alert about this noxious weed and thereÂ is even a Hogweed Hotline to reportÂ sitings. (800-292-3939)Â Â Another neighbor who was trimming the plant was recently treated to blisters on the arm. Several states have moved to ban the weed and it is on the “unwanted list” called the Federal Noxious Weed List which means it is illegal to transport across state lines (sort of a plant Mann act). The USDA and the Michigan Department of Agriculture have a brochure detailing the plant and its noxious properties. This is one plant that is not wanted alive. And the good news is the one in my garden will be gone before it goes to seed. This plant was purchased about 10 years ago at a local high end nursery. Hey, if it isn’t Hogweed it’s Pokeweed and if it isn’t Pokeweed it’s the Mustard plant.