Saturday, June 8, 2019

June 4, 2019: Golden Alexander vs. Wild Parsnip

Don't confuse the native Golden Alexander (Zizia aurea) with the invasive Wild Parsnip (Pastinaca sativa)!  Golden Alexanders (left) have flower umbels 2 to 3 inches across, with leaves that are 2 or 3 times compound in groups of 3, and grow to 1 to 3 feet tall.  The Wild Parsnips (right) have flower umbels to 8 inches across, with once-compound leaves, and can grow to 4 to 5 feet tall.  One should also avoid skin contact with the sap of the Wild Parsnip.  The juice, in contact with the skin and in the presence of sunlight, can cause a rash that will blister and discolor the skin (phytophotodermatitis).  [Believe me, it's not a pretty sight.] (Wolf. Oesterreich, 6/4/19)

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