RAUK - Archived Forum - invasion of the giants

This contains the Forum posts up until the end of March, 2011. Posts may be viewed but cannot be edited or replied to - nor can new posts be made. More recent posts can be seen on the new Forum at http://www.herpetofauna.co.uk/forum/

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invasion of the giants:

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ben rigsby
Senior Member
Joined: 27 Apr 2010
No. of posts: 337


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Posted: 27 Mar 2011
hi folks,

Giant Hogweed is really common around here.
road and waysides, rivers, ponds, farmland etc

beside the old canal theres a small forest of it. 50m or more of virtually nothing but Heracleum Mantegazzianum (snappy name eh? )
by flowering time in June/July it looks like Vietnamese jungle or something!
its a very compelling eye or lens magnet for any passers-by believe me.

ok, so this is an invasive alien species so we dont want it eh?
i know.

if im honest though, i love seeing it.
sorry, its a guilty pleasure

bit like being thrilled to see Boscombes beautiful and alluring Wall/Green Lizards - even though youre alarmed by their prescence here.

similarly, you cannot be unimpressed when youre dwarfed by a 3.5 METRE tall, deep purple-streaked and spikily-leaved, biennial (!!) umbellifer that looks like it came from outer space and drinks Roundup for breakfast.
a species which also possesses interesting adaptations like venom-like toxic properties in the form of skin-blistering sap.

now CAN you?

ah well, thats life eh folks?
maybe ill get jaded by them in time.


on their way up beside the River Frome yesterday;



easy to see how the species has spread so well. what with air and river-borne seed deployment tactics;



WHAT DO YOU THINK OF THEM?

short of major concerted cost and effort (unlikely) this goliath seems here to stay.

wonder which uk present species will eat the stuff?


cheers all

ben

Diversity.
Scale
Senior Member
Joined: 05 Dec 2010
No. of posts: 83


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Posted: 28 Mar 2011
Young sauteed Common Hogweed stems make a worthy substitute
for Asparagus spears, sure. However, I would not recommend
knocking up a warm salad from this particular variety!   

- invasion of the giants

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