Heracleum (plant)

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Heracleum (plant)
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{{Automatic taxobox|image=Heracleum sphondylium (Thomé Bd.3 1905, BHL-81509, Tafel 451) clean, no-description.png|image_caption=Heracleum sphondylium|taxon=Heracleum
Carl Linnaeus>L. }}Heracleum is a genus of biennial and perennial herbs in the carrot family Apiaceae. They are found throughout the temperate northern hemisphere and in high mountains as far south as Ethiopia. Common names for the genus or its species include hogweedhogweed at Oxford Online Dictionaries and cow parsnip.BOOK, Bailey, L.H.; Bailey, E.Z.; the staff of the Liberty Hyde Bailey Hortorium, 1976, Hortus third: A concise dictionary of plants cultivated in the United States and Canada, Macmillan, New York, 978-0-02-505470-7, WEB,weblink Heracleum L.,, Missouri Botanical Garden, 11 Oct 2011, The genus name Heracleum was described by Carl Linnaeus in 1753. It derives from the Ancient Greek {{wikt-lang|grc|Ἡράκλειος}} ({{grc-tr|Ἡράκλειος}}) "of Heracles", referring to the mythological hero.


Many species of the genus Heracleum are similar in appearance.WEB,weblink Giant Hogweed (Heracleum mantegazzianum): Best Management Practices in Ontario, MacDonald, Francine, Anderson, Hayley, May 2012, Ontario Invasive Plant Council, Peterborough, ON, September 1, 2018, An outlier is H. mantegazzianum, the large size of which is exceptional. Common species include: {{As of|July 2019}}, Plants of the World Online accepts the following 148 species:{{Columns-list|colwidth=25em| }}{{Gallery|mode=packed
Giant hogweed, Heracleum mantegazzianum Sosnowsky's hogweed, Heracleum sosnowskyi Cow parsnip, Heracleum maximum Common hogweed, Heracleum sphondyliumHeracleum austriacum}}

Classification and naming

Other than size, the related species H. mantegazzianum, H. sosnowskyi, and H. persicum have very similar characteristics. The common name giant hogweed usually refers to H. mantegazzianum alone but in some locales that common name refers to all three species as a group.WEB, 87-7903-209-5,weblink The giant hogweed best practice manual: guidelines for the management and control of invasive weeds in Europe, Booy, Olaf, Cock, Matthew, Eckstein, Lutz, Hansen, Steen Ole, Hattendorf, Jan, Hüls, Jörg, Jahodová, Sárka, Krinke, Lucás, Marovoková, Lanka, Müllerová, Jana, Nentwig, Wolfgang, Nielsen, Charlotte, Otte, Annette, Pergl, Jan, Perglová, Irena, Priekule, Ilze, Pusek, Petr, Ravn, Hans Peter, Thiele, Jan, Trybush, Sviatlana, Wittenberg, Rüdiger, 2005, Hørsholm: Center for Skov, Landskab og Planlægning/Københavns Universitet, September 1, 2018, Both H. maximum and H. sphondylium are often referred to as cow parsnip. To avoid confusion, these species are sometimes referred to as American cow parsnip and European cow parsnip, respectively.WEB,weblink Heracleum sphondylium common names, EOL, September 15, 2018, WEB,weblink German-English Dictionary: cow parsnip,, September 15, 2018, The morphological similarity of species within the genus Heracleum and the difficulty of botanical identification has led to numerous synonyms and naming issues. For example, the classification of the species now widely known as H. maximum has been inconsistent. In the literature, the scientific names H. lanatum, H. maximum, and others are used interchangeably. Prior to 2000, the former name was most popular, but today the latter name is in vogue.

Phototoxic effects

Most species of the genus Heracleum are known to cause phytophotodermatitis.WEB, The Electronic Textbook of Dermatology,weblink Botanical Dermatology, McGovern, Thomas W, Barkley, Theodore M, Section Phytophotodermatitis, Internet Dermatology Society, August 11, 2018, In particular, the public health risks of giant hogweed (H. mantegazzianum) are well known.WEB,weblink Giant Hogweed Warning: Plant That Can Cause Blindness, Burn Skin, Spreads Into New State, Gander, Kashmira, June 18, 2018, Newsweek, August 11, 2018, JOURNAL,weblink 10.31482/mmsl.2017.021, 0372-7025, Giant Hogweed And Photodermatitis, Mil. Med. Sci. Lett. (Voj. Zdrav. Listy), 2017, 86, 3, 135–138, Patocka, Jiri, Cupalova, Klara, JOURNAL, Phytophotodermatitis from Heracleum mantegazzianum, Contact Dermatitis, 1976, 2, 2, 68–72, Camm, E, Buck, HW, Mitchell, JC, At least 36 species of the genus Heracleum have been reported to contain furanocoumarin,BOOK, Mitchell, John, Rook, Arthur, Botanical Dermatology: Plants and Plant Products Injurious to the Skin, 1979, Greengrass, Vancouver, 692–699, a chemical compound that sensitizes human skin to sunlight.{{citation needed|date=October 2018}} Of those, at least 25 species contained a psoralen derivative, either bergapten (5-methoxypsoralen) or methoxsalen (8-methoxypsoralen). Three of those species (H. mantegazzianum, H. sosnowskyi, and H. sphondylium) were found to contain both psoralen derivatives.



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