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Great Britain

Set B2 - Wild Flowers - card information

11. Cow Parsnip
(Heracleum sphondylium L.)

11. Cow Parsnip

Most people have difficulty in sorting out our various Umbellifers - parsley-like plants with flower stalks arranged like the ribs of an umbrella. The cow parsnip is one of the most common, growing by roadsides and on waste ground everywhere and flowering from June until late autumn. Its stem is thick, grooved and hairy, and its leaves are much less finely divided than is usual in this family. The umbels of small white flowers are often six inches across.