Water-parsnip, Lesser

Information on Lesser Water-parsnip

Common Name: Lesser Water-parsnip
Scientific Name: Berula erecta
Irish Name: Ráib uisce
Family Group: Apiaceae
Distribution: View Map (Courtesy of the BSBI)
Flowering Period

Click for list of all flowering by month
Lesser Water-parsnip could sometimes be confused with:


Lesser Water-parsnip can be erect to 80cm or decumbent, growing on runners in ditches, ponds, canals and muddy margins of slow-moving rivers. It is a perennial species that bears umbels of small, short-stalked white flowers. These umbels 3-6cm across) have 7-20 smooth rays and leafy bracts and bracteoles. A hairless plant, the stem is grooved. The blueish-green leaves (25cm long) are in pairs, are acutely teethed and pinnate, the lower leaves having 5-9 pairs of lobes. The stem of the basal leaves has a ring-mark or node. This is not a widespread species, being mainly found in the centre of Ireland and it is poisonous. It flowers from July to September and is a native species belonging to the Carrot or Apiaceae family.

I was introduced to this species at an Apiaceae workshop at the National Biodiversity Data Centre which was given by Paul Green, BSBI Vice-county Recorder for Waterford and Wexford.

If you are satisfied you have correctly identified this plant, please submit your sighting to the National Biodiversity Data Centre

Water-parsnip, Lesser
Water-parsnip, Lesser
Water-parsnip, Lesser