Ithaca (WSYR-TV) -- It’s that time of year when we all head outdoors and enjoy nature’s beauty, but what might be beautiful, may also be potentially harmful.
Cornell University released it's "Do Not Touch" list earlier this week, highlighting some poisonous plants that when touched can cause serious skin reactions.GIANT HOGWEED:
First on their list is the Giant Hogweed – an invasive plant that was brought over during Victorian times as an ornamental plant for gardens, according to Cornell University.
The Giant Hogweed stands 10 to 15 feet tall and is topped with umbrella shaped flowers. The stem is as big around as a soda can and has purple splotches and fine hairs.
Touching the Giant Hogweed will cause serious skin reactions. Call your doctor if you suspect you’ve come in contact with one.
If you need help identifying Hogweed, send images to email@example.com
. If you do have Hogweed, contact the NYS DEC at 1- 845-256-3111.WILD PARSNIP:
Next on Cornell’s Do Not Touch list, the Wild Parsnip – A plant that is common in fields and along roadways. Wild Parsnip is in full bloom at this time of year and can grow up to five feet tall.
Wild parsnip is a single stem plant with multiple branches and lime yellow flowers at the end of each branch. The flowers are, like the Giant Hogweed, umbrella shaped, but they are lime yellow in color.
Contact with Wild Parsnip can cause blisters and skin discoloration. Again, you may want to call your doctor if you suspect you’ve come in contact with Wild Parsnip.PIGWEED:
Pigweed comes in next on the list. Pigweed can cause severe skin blistering and is not as easily identifiable as Hogweed due to its small size. It can easily blend in with other weeds and it comes in several forms, making it hard to distinguish from other plants.STINGING NETTLES:
Also on the list is Stinging Nettles, which is a plant covered with tiny hypodermic needle like hairs. If those hairs come in contact with skin, Cornell University says they can inject toxins, cause localized pain, reddish swelling, prolonged itching and numbness. Unfortunately, this plant is another one of those plants that blend right in with other plants.POISON IVY:
And of course, Poison Ivy, which is a climbing or trailing vine with three leaves. If you’ve ever come in contact with Poison Ivy you know it can cause skin inflammation, blistering and itching. Cornell University says a good rule of thumb when trying to identify Poison Ivy: "Leaves of three, leave them be."
Poison Ivy can be carried by smoke, which is why Cornell University says to never burn it. It can also be transmitted via pets.