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Help me ID this Umbelliferae!!

 
Jessica Gorton
Posts: 274
Location: Central Maine - Zone 4b/5a
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With a toddler running around, I am of course concerned about it being water hemlock (this isn't a marshy spot, but we have a very high water table, so I'm not going assume anything). But the leaves, especially the lower leaves, seem too wide for hemlock, and the stems are green throughout, not purple. I also thought cow parsnip, but it's not nearly big enough, and the leaves don't seem right for that, either. I found Honewort in my Peterson's guide, and for a minute I thought that was it, but the flowers don't seem right - honewort looks to have a sparser flower pattern. Flowers not the right color for wild parsnip...I'm at a loss. Anyone?
Umbellifera upright.jpg
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Upright flower stalk
Umbellifera flower.jpg
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Close up of flower
Umbellifera leaves.jpg
[Thumbnail for Umbellifera leaves.jpg]
Leaves (more narrow on the stalk, but you can see how wide they are near the ground)
 
Jessica Gorton
Posts: 274
Location: Central Maine - Zone 4b/5a
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And some more pics:
Umbellifera stem.jpg
[Thumbnail for Umbellifera stem.jpg]
Stem close up
Umbellifera again.jpg
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Umbellifera wide view.jpg
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In its "wild" habitat, at the edge of a field which is hayed several times/year. It's only 3 or 4 feet tall.
 
mitch brant
Posts: 70
Location: Western Pa
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Try Goutweed.
 
Jessica Gorton
Posts: 274
Location: Central Maine - Zone 4b/5a
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Yes! Thanks! Now I don't have to worry I'm going to kill myself weeding...
 
Paulo Bessa
pollinator
Posts: 352
Location: Portugal (zone 9) and Iceland (zone 5)
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Whatever you do, do NOT eat it.

Umbelliferae can be one of the most trickly families to correctly identify its often very similar looking species. And some of them are extremely poisonous and deadly, and they are so difficult to distinguish from their edible cousins.



 
Jessica Gorton
Posts: 274
Location: Central Maine - Zone 4b/5a
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No worries, I'm not planning on eating it...we have lots of wild edibles that I do recognize, I don't need to try something I'm unsure of. But after looking around at lots of pictures on the web and in my field guides, I'm pretty sure it is goutweed. So, a bit invasive, but not something I need to spend a lot of time trying to eradicate...

The only umbelliferae I feel pretty confident identifying in the wild are Queen Anne's Lace (the hairy stems distinguish it from poison hemlock, plus that yummy carrot smell!), and yarrow, which to me, after years of working with it, just seems like such a distinctive plant.
 
Isaac Hill
gardener
Posts: 356
Location: Beaver County, Pennsylvania (~ zone 6)
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Yarrow is in the aster family, not carrot family.
 
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