Herbs – Heracleum


Among the many genera of herbs, Heracleum is known for its biennial and perennial plants. These species are found in the northern hemisphere, in high mountains as far south as Ethiopia. They are commonly referred to as hogweed or cow parsnip.

Common names

During the 19th century, large Heracleum species were fashionable in European gardens. In Norway, they were first introduced as ornamental plants in the 1830s.

However, there are some uncertainties about the species’ history in northern Norway. These uncertainties were resolved by a DNA study of large Heracleum species in Europe, which provided genetic evidence that H. persicum is the plant in the north of Norway.

During the 19th century, the area of northern Norway was a rich trade region. It was a centre of trade for Russians at the White Sea. It was also a major port for the White Sea region. In northern Norway, folk traditions claimed that Heracleum plants were brought from northern Russia.

Characteristics of the genus

Species of Heracleum are mostly endemic to China and the western and central Caucasus. They are commonly used as spices and medicinal plants. Heracleum plants have antifungal, antiproliferative, antibacterial, antimycobacterial, anticonvulsant, antidiarheal and antiseptic properties. Their phytochemical composition includes furanocoumarins and monoterpenes. These compounds have been used in the treatment of psoriasis and vitiligo. They have potential to be developed as drugs.

The genus Heracleum is classified in the family Apiaceae. It grows in wetlands, forests and mountain areas. It has a yellow branched root system. When it matures it has a 15 cm diameter crown. Its leaves are ternately compound with three or more segments. The flowers are typically five-petalled with radial symmetry. They occur in June to October.

Symptoms of psoralen toxicosis in cattle

Symptoms of psoralen toxicosis aren’t always clear cut. Aside from the ill-fated cow, there may be more to the story. For example, a swine may exhibit the usual swine symptoms, or a dairy cow may be experiencing a bout of diarrhea. These types of symptoms are often associated with a high level of gossypol in the feed. It’s important to keep a close eye on this type of disease since it can be deadly. In some cases, a patient may die on the spot.

The best course of action is to send the sample to a diagnostic laboratory. You might also consider alternating the feed with a non-poisonous alternative.

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