Secret Scotland

If it's secret, and in Scotland…

Most useless warning ever

After yesterday’s subject of ‘Most useless shop ever‘, I spotted an online warning that cried out to carry on that theme, and be the ‘Most useless warning ever‘.

The following source is dated 27 July 2017, just a few days ago, from a news site I have never come across before: GlasgowLive

(If this is typical, then I can guess why my searches have passed it by).

Warning after UK’s ‘most dangerous plant’ is spotted in Glasgow

I don’t know who is responsible for spotting such ‘dangers’, but they need a wake up call (or a good stiff boot up the backside) if they are being paid for this stuff.

They’re not only FAR TOO LATE with this so-called ‘Warning’, they’re so late that most of the plants concerned are dead or dying.

They say (remember, on 27 July 2017):

The UK’s “most dangerous plant” has been spotted in several locations across Glasgow.

Giant hogweed has been spotted in areas around Rutherglen and Cambuslang, especially near the River Clyde, East Kilbride Road, Greenlees Road and in the Cathkin area.

The plant can grow up to three metres tall with a 20cm thick stem and a large, white, umbrella-shaped flowering head.

It has sharply serrated or divided leaves which can grow up to 2m wide with bristles on the underside.

I posted a ‘sighting’ recorded in Cambuslang on 04 June 2017, just above the banks of the River Clyde which were teeming with the giants well-established and in full bloom – that’s almost TWO MONTHS before that belated effort.

Beware the Giant Hogweed – Really!

Giant Hogweed Bud

Giant Hogweed Bud

And then I posted again, about three weeks later, when they had started dying off:

Giant hogweed – not so cocky after three weeks

Giant Hogweed Dried

Giant Hogweed Dried

Almost a month after taking those pics near Cambuslang, I could go and take another of the banks of the River Clyde at Clydeford Bridge, but it would be a waste of time as all the plants concerned are now withered, brown, and dying, with few (if any) of the white flowering heads to be seen anywhere.

By all means issue a warning, but try to make it BEFORE the danger arises, not long after the main danger is well past its sell-by date.

A little better fact-checking and writing would not go amiss either.

I doubt the likelihood of  the “20cm thick stem” they claim in their ‘warning’. That’s more like a small tree trunk, not a stem.

From the pics, 2 cm seems typical, with a bit more on better examples than the weedy ones I caught by the roadside.

I also have my doubts about “leaves which can grow up to 2m wide“, and think what they really meant to refer to was the overall width of the leaves’ spread around the main stem, not the leaves themselves.

2 metre wide leaves – now THAT would be a GIANT HOGWEED!


So, I lied – and DID go get pics to prove my case.

Well, I had to be there anyway, so took a decent camera.

The first pic is looking over the bridge parapet next to where the original pics above were taken.

As can be seen, no white flower heads on the deadly giant hogweed down there, and I had to push the processing to make the dried up brown and dead or dying plants show up at all.

Giant Hogweed August 1

Giant Hogweed August 1

And a second, this time including the river just to put things in context. Again dead and dying, brown and dry.

Giant Hogweed August 1

Giant Hogweed August 1


August 2, 2017 - Posted by | Civilian | , , ,

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