Terror of Parthenium Hysterophorus
Parthenium Hysterophorus

Just a week ago national newspaper of Nepal published about this plant. It attracted my attention. The title read “Badmash Number 1 Jhar” which means the worst weed. I saw the picture and realized that a huge amount of this plant was growing in front of my house. These picture at the bottom is of the field in front of my house. So I did a research about it. This is a noxious weed that is very harmful and even lethal in some cases.

This became a threatening and important issue for me because I have been living between them. This plant came to Nepal and India from Mexico and since past year this plant has been terrorizing Nepali people. Many activist and journalist have been posting and informing people about. Let’s see its aspects and effects on human and animal life.

It is also called Teete Paati in Nepal, Safed Topi “White Top” in India and Santa Maria in other parts of the world. Its various parts contain heavily toxic substances such as Sesquiterpene Lactones, Glycoside Parthenin, Hysterin, Ambrosin, 3,7-dimethylether, 6-Hydroxyl Kaempferol 3-0 Arabinoglucoside, Fumaric acid. P-Hydroxy Benzoin and Vanillic acid etc. In simple terms, it is a very bad plant.

Health Hazards

So let me show you the trailer first before you read about this horrifying plant. In India some people have been reported to be dead due to this plant. The pollen of this plant can case allergy on the place of contact and several dermatological problems. Over exposure and contact with this plant can cause Asthma, skin inflammation , allergic rhinitis, burning and blisters around eyes. These are pretty big reasons to eradicate this monster.
Santa Maria Plants
Santa Maria Plants
If the animals like cow, buffalo, goat etc eat them, they can also suffer from the consequences. The milk of the animals start to smell bad and the consumer of the milk is also affected and this can start skin burn and other dermatology related problems.

Effect on Biodiversity

This weed can cover vast area of land in short interval. As this plant has many harmful aspects on life of human and animals, it also threatens the biodiversity. This plants reduces growth of pasture grass and many other agricultural plants such as chick peas, radish and other winter crops. As a matter of fact this plant grows exponentially in monsoon season. Reduced number of chlorophyll, problem in fruiting and lack of nutrition are major problems of Nepal due to this plant which has disturbed the whole grassland ecosystem of our country.

This problem has reached an epidemic level now. Its time for the government to take majors to ensure that this plant doesn’t evade the agricultural land and destroy the crops and even cause a human life threat. Please be careful because I have seen them is busy side roads too. This plant has already made to top 20 of most dangerous plants. Pluck them out and burn them after drying to avoid future growth of this plant. Keep the field and garden clean and pick up the unnecessary plants regularly.


Leave a Reply