Plants of the Castlemaine district
Hemlock - introduced (*Conium maculatum)
Family: Apiaceae (Parsley, carrot family).
Native of Europe and Asia.
Occurrence: Scattered weed of disturbed areas. It is a noxious weed and listed as Restricted in central Victoria.
- the leaves resemble carrot leaves or fern fronds
- the tall stems (to 2 metres or more) are hollow
- the stems and leaf stalks have purple spots
- it is said to have a strong, mousy smell when crushed
- the flowers are white, and grow in radiating sprays (like that of parsley and carrots).
All parts of the plant are poisonous.
Similar species: Other members of the parsley family resemble Hemlock. Hemlock can usually be distinguished by the mousy smell and purple stem
markings. The young leaves can resemble fern leaves.
Hemlock page 2
Photos 1: Hemlock. View from above. The flowers are on radiating stalks which again divide into radiating stalks.
This flower arrangement is common in members of the parsley family. Castlemaine.
2: Hemlock showing the fern-like leaves and the branched flower stalks. Castlemaine.
3: Leaves beside the Loddon River. Warburtons Bridge.
4. Dense infestation of Hemlock along a pathway. Tower Hill. At flowering time the Hemlock will be much taller.