Veterinary Medicine Library

Poison Hemlock (Conium maculatum L.)


poison hemlock

Additional images of Poison Hemlock


Description

Poison hemlock is a coarse biennial herb with a smooth, purple-spotted, hollow stem and leaves like parsley. It grows 3 to 6 feet tall and in late summer has many small white flowers in showy umbels. Its leaves are extremely nauseating when tasted.

Although sometimes confused with water hemlock, poison hemlock can be distinguished by its leaves and its roots. The leaf veins of the poison hemlock run to the tips of the teeth; those of the water hemlock run to the notches between the teeth. The poison hemlock root is long, white, and fleshy. It is usually unbranched and can be easily distinguished from the root of water hemlock, which is made up of several tubers.

| Distribution | Conditions of poisoning | Control | Toxic principle | Clinical signs |

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Comments to: Greg Youngen
Updated on: 01/21/2005 VK, 03/18/1996