Tuesday, June 10, 2008

Finally Back to Utrecht again...

Last monday, I was in Denmark. And we were in Wageningen on Tuesday for a small workshop. So, I did not come to WKZ at all.

And this monday, we arrived early from Paris; and there was NMC meeting in the afternoon.

So, today finally I am again in Utrecht after a while.

Margriet's "little poor plant"
I asked Margriet today if she had any plans to water her plant. Normally, it is almost always me who waters the littel poor plant 'zielige plantje'. She said "let me check"; and opened Microsoft Outlook calendar. Then, she joked that it was not in her agenda, so she won't.

Then, I told her that it would be better if she takes the responsibility to take care of the little hoya serpens.

By the way, Inge's hoya lacunosa is finally doing something: produced a new branch with 3 tiny leaves.

Giant Cow-Parsley
While we were walking outside with Tjeerd at noon, he pointed to a plant among the grasses alongside a canal. "These are called 'berenklauw' in dutch, meaning bear's paws; and they are poisonous" he said. He added that if I grab their stem, my hand will be very itchy.

We have checked from wikipedia when we were back from walking. Its english name is giant cow's parsley, or giant hogweed. The exact dutch name is reuzenberenklauw. I could not find any turkish name.

The following photo is from the internet.

Wikipedia says that:

-its sap causes severe skin inflammations. They form scars that can last several years.
- if eyes are exposed to minute amount of its sap, it can cause temporary and even permanent blindness.
- you should have head-to-toe covering while removing it.


mirzaghasemi said...

I was reading a Persian blog a few days ago,
and the guy was talking about how h was having a walk with a friend and his friend showed him these plants that were poisonous, ...!
The interesting thing was that his friend said that they call the plant "philosopher's poison" in their native city, and he had googled it and figured out that it is actually the plant that Socrates had used its poison to kill himself with. Cool, huh! (we call it "Shokaraan" in Persian, maybe it would be somewhat similar to the Turkish name...)
Anyway it seems that its a bit different from the one you have seen it is called Conium http://en.wikipedia.org/wiki/Conium, the one you meant is http://en.wikipedia.org/wiki/Giant_Hogweed
(the Dutch name matches :D ),
but http://en.wikipedia.org/wiki/Cow_parsley
seems to be something different that looks the same but is not poisonous.
Now I'm an expert! It only took 5 min with wiki!

Sara said...

one more thing: the more common English name for Conium is poison hemlock

tunahan said...

Thanks a lot for details.

I went to Uncle Wiki again. The one I saw is "Heracleum mantegazzianum". Giant Hogweed or Giant's Cow-Parsley. Although the three plants (giant cow parsley, conium and cow-parsley) look very similar, they all have different genus. Surprising...

And I have managed to find the turkish name finally for giant cow parsley: "Büyük Tavşanotu" meaning "Big Rabbitweed". Needless to say, cow's parsley is known as "rabbitweed".

The turkish name for '(poison) Hemlock' or Conium, on the other hand, is '(poisonous) Baldıran', not similar to persian version.

One interesting note for you: the dutch version is also known as "Perzische berenklauw" : persian bearpaw.

I have seen this giant cow parsley yesterday evening in the green area where panamalaan and zeeburgerdijk crosses. It is so poisonous, yet it is even in the city. Many countries (denmark, england popped up in my googlings) develop active fight against this plant. Yet, dutch authorities seem to not to have such a policy.

tunahan said...

One more thing;
How interesting it is!
The plant is associated with different animals in three different languages:
giant rabbitweed (turkish)
giant cow parsley (english)
persian bearpaw (dutch)

Sara said...

Yes, I was also surprised that it is found in the city so often...
The animal thing is so interesting, and they're really different animals too!

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