In the Northeast toxic plants like Giant Hogweed and Cow Parsnip are common.
Giant Hogweed can grow well over ten feet tall with striking green hollow stalks that can be up to six inches thick, the leaves look similar to Maple and their white flowers bloom in clusters at the top of the plant. Cow Parsnip looks like a smaller version of Hogweed.
If you come into contact with either of these plants, seek medical attention immediately.
Coming into contact with Hogweed can cause burns, blisters, a severe rash and a harmful sensitivity to sunlight that can last in extreme cases up to a decade. Cow Parsnip is smaller and similar in looks to Hogweed, while its effects are less severe it does still include burns and rashes.
If you encounter Hogweed you are asked to report it to the Ontario Invasive Species website at http://www.eddmaps.org/ontario/ or call landscaping professionals to remove the plants.