Parsnip plant

What does it look like?  Why is it dangerous? Handling the parsnip plant (Pastinaca sativa), which grows wild and is cultivated in gardens in allotments may make your skin very sensitive to light leading to burning, blisters and a painful rash. The problem seems to be the plant’s sap which contains chemicals called furoumarins. These … More Parsnip plant

Poisonous plants

What does it look like? Yew Chrysanthemums Deadly nightshade Hemlock Water Dropwort Snowdrops Mistletoe Daffodil bulbs Berries Why is it dangerous? Around 75% of the plants in an average English garden or the countryside are toxic to some extent. Most of them are only mildly toxic and can cause rashes or tummy aches which are … More Poisonous plants


What does it look like? A wide variety of plants found in the British countryside have thorns that can scratch or tear the skin and cause bleeding. They include: wild roses or briars, raspberries which grow in upright “canes” blackberry bushes, also known as brambles, which form vast messg clumps often entwined among other plants … More Thorns

Giant hogweed

What does it look like? Giant hogweed can grow up to five metres tall, often along footpaths and riverbanks.  Why is it dangerous? If the sap of the plant comes into contact with your skin, it can cause severe, painful burns and make your skin sensitive to strong sunlight. How can I avoid it? Learn … More Giant hogweed

Stinging nettles

What does it look like? Stinging nettles are low, small leaves which often grow alongside country paths, or in large patches spreading over a large area of the ground in forest or wooded areas. They have relatively anonymous looking leaves so it is important to pay attention to plants as you walk close to them. … More Stinging nettles