Wild Parsnip - Pastinaca sativa


An erect, medium to tall, strong smelling, hairy plant. Stem angled or ridged. Leaves pinnate, with 5 to 11 oval, lobed and toothed segments. Flowers yellow 1.5 mm in umbels with 9 to 20 unequal rays.

Identification difficulty
ID guidance

Yellow flowers; hairy; leaves 1-pinnate; fruits flattened, rounded, with low ridges

Recording advice

Photo of the plant in its habitat


Rough grassy places, usually on dry calcareous soils.

When to see it

Late June to August.

Life History


UK Status

Occasional but widespread in central and southern England, local and often coastal elsewhere.

VC55 Status

Mainly found in the north east of Leicestershire and parts of Rutland, just a few records from railway verges elsewhere in VC55. In the 1979 Flora survey of Leicestershire it was found in 61 of the 617 tetrads.

In the current Checklist (Jeeves, 2011) it is listed as Native, calcareous soils, locally frequent

Leicestershire & Rutland Map


Yellow squares = NBN records (all known data)
Coloured circles = NatureSpot records: 2020+ | 2015-2019 | pre-2015

UK Map

Species profile

Common names
Wild Parsnip
Species group:
Records on NatureSpot:
First record:
30/06/2011 (Calow, Graham)
Last record:
16/07/2023 (Willis, Jill)

Total records by month

% of records within its species group

10km squares with records

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