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Giant Hogweed on the Prairies

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Giant Hogweed on the Prairies

Postby Barrie » Jul 20, 2010 12:40 pm

(Apologies to fans of either Little House or Little Mosque)

The news reports of this invader suggest it is rampant everywhere, but I don't know if it can survive a prairie winter.
We have Valerian in our garden, which resembles the Hogweed in some ways, at least from the photos. Valerian has flower clusters, rather than an umbrella of blooms, and it flowers every year. Oh, yes, it "only" reaches about 6 feet in ideal conditions, at least here in Calgary. Valerian's good point is its attractiveness to bees and other insects, but it spreading habit requires careful observance and elimination - not unlike Lamb's quarters, etc.
Has anyone else seen the resemblance between Valerian and hogweed?

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Re: Giant Hogweed on the Prairies

Postby Eeyore » Jul 20, 2010 12:53 pm

Maybe they are from the same family? A lot of members of the carrot family produce those lovely umbrels of flowers.
AB, Zone 3A
“Those who say it can't be done are usually interrupted by others doing it.” ` James Arthur Baldwin"
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Re: Giant Hogweed on the Prairies

Postby EarthHealing » Jul 18, 2012 11:22 pm

Valerian (Valerian officinalis) is not related to Giant Hogweed, or the carrot family, it has its own genus. It is grown for its fragrant flower and medicinal root. Giant Hogweed is much bigger, with thick purple blotched hollow stems and it has a nauseating smell, as do many poisonous plants (Warning! Don't eat me!). Valerian has simple or pinnate leaves while Giant Hogweed's leaves are monstrous and very divided. It's a crazy looking plant, I don't see how anyone could mistake graceful Valerian or Queen Ann's Lace or Yarrow for this monster, and certainly they each have their own distinctive smells!
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