Friday, 17 July 2015

Giant Hogweed in the news 2: Mark to the rescue!

Giant Hogweed
Image courtesy of J. Crellin/Floral Images
http://www.floralimages.co.uk/page.php?
taxon=heracleum_mantegazzianum,1
With Giant Hogweed still making the headlines today, BSBI has been working with colleagues in the media and across the botanical community to get some clear and helpful information out about this plant and the level of threat it poses to the public. 

So botanist Dr Mark Spencer (an active BSBI member based at the Natural History Museum) has just filmed an outside broadcast with Joe Tidy for Sky News [now available here, also features Sir David Attenborough - Ed.] and is now hot-footing it to the ITV News Meridian studios for a piece going out on the 6 o'clock news tonight. 

He will be aiming to explain how to identify Giant Hogweed (there are other perfectly benign plants which look superficially similar), where it grows, and whether or not it is increasing

Let's hope that once people know what to look out for, they will be able to avoid Giant Hogweed and enjoy the vast majority of wildflowers which are quite safe to touch. All this just goes to show how important it is to be able to identify plants with accuracy and confidence, i.e. to have some botanical skills