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Giant Hogweed: Invasive Species Spreading Through BC

Giant Hogweed is an invasive species spreading through the province of BC. Visit this site on the French Creek Giant Hogweed Project for a wealth of information.

Each plant produces about 50, 000 winged seeds that can float through the air for up to three days before settling in the soil, where they can last up to 15 years. Mature plants can reach up to five meters in height and 1.5 metres in width.

Giant hogweed
Giant hogweed

Originally from China, Giant Hogweed was brought to British Columbia as a garden ornamental, but has since become a toxic hazard in many areas of the province. Infestation was thought to be minimized to the Lower Mainland, Fraser Valley, Gulf Islands, and central to southern Vancouver Island but reports of growth elsewhere such as the Sheridan Lake area are increasing.

Hogweed map
Hogweed map

The toxic sap located in the leaves and stems can cause burns and blistering, discoloration and scarring once in contact with the skin and exposed to sunlight.

Day 5, 6 and 7 of hogweed burns on a man's leg
Day 5, 6 and 7 of hogweed burns on a man’s leg
Hogweed burns on a man's leg
Hogweed burns on a man’s leg

If you spot this species anywhere, please report it to the Report-a-Weed program.

WorkSafeBC has issued a toxic plant warning and produced a video for public awareness on identification, precautions, and removal guidelines.

For more information:

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