Giant Hogweed: The Truly Horrible Plant with Redeeming Qualities?

Health, Medicine
[caption id="attachment_23846" align="alignright" width="480"] Attractive, after a fashion, the Giant Hogweed. Image MabelAmber[/caption] The Giant Hogweed is a hot topic in the United Kingdom, and now also in the United States. Have you personally “experienced” the Giant Hogweed, Heracleum mantegazzianum? We’re not speaking of Heracleum sphondylium, the Common Hogweed, no. Giant Hogweed has a horrific reputation, and is widely considered a noxious weed. Its reputation has taken it from the hospital and the laboratory to detective TV. For instance, Giant Hogweed is the weapon of choice in the Rosemary & Thyme pilot episode entitled, “And No Birds Sing.” Giant Hogweed Toxins The chemicals in Giant Hogweed that provide its sordid reputation are furanocoumarins – or (for short) furocoumarins. This name is derived from the characteristic two ring portions they share…
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