Oenanthe crocata - Hemlock Water-dropwort

Hemlock Water-dropwort by a river


Phylum: Anthophyta

Class: Equisetopsida

Order: Apiales

Family: Apiaceae

This plant is widespread but only locally common throughout the UK and Ireland.





All parts of this fast-growing plant of wetlands and river margins is poisonous. If cattle eat the roots the result can be fatal.

Hemlock water-dropwort

The common name comes from the fact that the tuberous root is connected to the main plant by only a relatively thin linking fibre.

Hemlock water-dropwort flowers mainly in June and July. It is a perennial umbelifer and can sometimes reach shoulder height. Because it is such a poisonous plant, the stems should not be used for making peashooters.

The pictures on this page were taken in West Wales in July.