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Wild Parsnip found in Rudolph, poses serious risk to humans

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wild parsnip

RUDOLPH, Wis. (WAOW) -- More time outside means more chances to come in contact with wild hazardous plants. One of those plants found right here in Wisconsin: wild parsnip.

The plant grows up to 5' tall, it can be found all over the badger state. Wild parsnip could be in backyards without residents even knowing it.

Since the plant has been spotted in Rudolph, residents like Rich Larsen are trying to spread the word.

"I'm trying to tell as many people as I can about it to keep them safe," said Larsen.

Dan O'Connell Senior Conservation Technician for the Land and Water Conservation Division in Portage Co. says "wild parsnip grows along the roadsides, disturbed areas, grassy fields, those types of places"

When the sap of the wild parsnip plant contacts your skin it can cause severe rashes, blisters, and even discoloration of your skin.

"There will literally be hundreds and hundreds of seeds on each plant," O'Connell said, noting that it makes things like mowing, more difficult. "When that is mowed it's a real hard seed that will actually be carried on a mower when it stops it will bounce off and be deposited there and then it starts to grow."

Findings of wild parsnip should be reported to the local health department.

If an individual wants to try and treat wild parsnip themselves, gloves, long sleeves, and long pants are necessary.

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