Hogweed, the cream broad beautiful flower that sits on tall hollow stems … ah yes, this is the plant – the free toy for the school boy.
In the countryside, boys will often break off the stem of the hogweed plant, once it has flowered and the stems dry out. This then becomes a pea-shooter and they will use the haws from the hawthorn plant or any other seed that will serve as a would-be pea. Then they simply make a small firing range … sometimes this will consist of dried teasel heads placed precariously on a wooden fence other times it might be the dried heads and stems of a variety of annuals. The winner is the one who can knock down the most items with the least amount of ammunition!
Hogweed is a perennial and grows up to two metres in height. It is useful in flower arrangements due to its natural habit of standing erect.