Dog owners warned after toxic plants found in park

Caution sign warning against Hemlock plants in a wooded area
The council said a high density of the plants have been identified in Thorpe Meadows [Shariqua Ahmed /BBC]

Visitors and dog walkers have been warned to take caution after poisonous hemlock plants were found in a city park.

Peterborough City Council has issued a warning after the plants were found in Thorpe Meadows, which includes a lake that the city's rowers use.

Hemlock, which looks similar to cow parsley with clusters of big white flowers, is one of the most toxic plants to humans and animals and can be fatal if ingested.

The council said it has been “working to restrict access” to areas of Thorpe Meadows, where a high density of the plants have been identified in fields.

Rowing lake
The area also includes a lake which is popular with rowers [Shariqua Ahmed / BBC]

The local authority said that fencing would be installed around the plants until herbicide treatment had been carried out.

A spokesperson for the council said: “As bird nesting season is currently in progress, treatment is not expected to start until September. Signage will also be installed to make visitors aware of the plants and relevant safety advice.”

Earlier this year, Peterborough City Council started work to eradicate toxic hemlock plants from Holywell Ponds in Longthorpe, Peterborough.

The first round of herbicide treatment had been scheduled for April, but the council later said the process could take up to five years because the plant is self-seeding.

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