Wild Parsnip



Where to find it:
Found along roadsides, in waste places, and in disturbed open areas. Maps>

Large compound leaves with sawtooth edges that look like celery leaves. The stem is hollow and grooved from 2-5 feet tall. Flowers are yellow, five-petaled, and grow in small branched umbrella-like clusters. The root when cut smells earthy and nicely aromatic, just like store-bought parsnip.

When to collect:
Late summer, fall, and early spring just before new growth. It is generally believed to get sweeter if harvested late in the fall and in very early spring.

Which parts are edible:
Roots (same exact species as parsnip found at the grocery).

WARNING: Sap from stems and leaves can cause skin irritation and burns. Wear gloves and long sleeves when harvesting green plants.

Learn to identify and avoid the deadly similar species, water hemlock and poison hemlock.

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