Summer is here and the weather is warmer and we find ourselves doing more things outside. If you are the adventurous type, you might find yourselves taking a hike through the woods or one of our gorgeous parks in Broome County.

Did you know that there are nine parks in Broome County? You may know of a few of them but now you can know about all of them. While you are exploring you may see a plant that looks like the harmless Queen Anne's Lace but is the toxic Poison Hemlock.

The Difference Between Poison Hemlock and Queen Anne's Lace

Poison Hemlock - This is one of the deadlier plants that you'll find in the US and it can be fatal if eaten, even in small amounts. You've probably seen this plant as your walking on hiking trails, in a field, or walking alongside a stream.

It'll have white flowers that grow in small erect clusters. The flower starts as a green, deeply ridged fruit that has several seeds. As it grows older, the fruit turns grayish brown.

The Poison Hemlock begins growing in the early spring and will continue to grow for 2 years. The Poison Hemlock is also deadly to animals so if you have pets or livestock, its important to know the difference between Queen Anne's Lace and the Poison Hemlock.

Signs of Poison Hemlock poisoning could begin to show an hour after they eat the plant. Here are other things to look for when it comes to the Poison Hemlock

Queen Anne's Lace - The root is a wild edible and grows in the same conditions as the Poison Hemlock. The stem will be hairy with fine hairs going all the way up with no spots. Poison Hemlock will be a smooth stem with purple blotches.

Queen Anne's lace will have a single purplish/red flower in the center of the umbrella-shaped pattern. It'll have a flat top while the Poison Hemlock is more rounded. The lace has 3-pronged bracts at the base of the flower.

When in doubt, leave them both alone, and if you think your pet/livestock has eaten Poison Hemlock, don't delay and contact a vet as soon as you can.

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