Mooney Tuesday 22 July 2014
We got an e-mail into the programme last week from a listener who wants us to help spread awareness of the dangers associated with a plant that can terrible burns if you come in contact with it.
David Gillic said he was out running in Kildare when he briefly made contact a plant that was unknown to him. He subsequently erupted into painful blisters, and found out that it was caused by Giant Hogweed, and invasive plant species that excretes a phototoxic sap…
David says: "I was personally shocked to learn of the existence of this type of plant as part of our national flora. Although not indigenous, it seems here to stay and I believe I'm more than qualified to state it poses a serious public health risk. Contact with the eyes can lead to blindness! Children too could be easily drawn to this plant as it resembles many other benign members of its own family closely.
I have added a few photos of the offending plant and of the results of my run in with what I feel is a plant sent straight from the gardens of Hell!
Please spread the word. It's a horrible plant.
Well Dave, thank you for your e-mail, and to explain more about Giant Hogweed, we are joined in studio today by Dr. Joe Caffrey, Senior Research Officer with the Invasive Species Section of Inland Fisheries Ireland.