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Poison parsnip spreads in Vt - WCAX.COM Local Vermont News, Weather and Sports-

Poison parsnip spreads in Vt

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BURLINGTON, Vt. -

You may have noticed a pretty, yellow plant growing along the highways and byways in our region. It is poison parsnip and it is an invasive species that is taking over.

The plant produces lots of seeds, which can be easily spread by the wind or mowing. The problem is it is highly toxic and most people don't realize that until it is too late.

"So the plant has a sap in it and when you get the sap on your skin and it reacts to the light it causes sort of a burn. It's exactly like a burn on your skin," said Heather Darby, an agronomist for UVM Extension.

Darby says if you do have to handle the plant wear boots and pants, long sleeves and gloves, and then make sure you wash well to get any oils from the plant off your skin as soon as possible.

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