In the English language, Conium maculatum can be translated into "poison

 hemlock". Conium is the generic Latin version of the Greek word Konas, meaning

"to whirl". This label is appropriate because one of the symptoms that people develop

 from ingesting this poisonous herb is vertigo, which causes a dizzy, whirling

 sensation. To learn more about the toxicity of this plant, click here!


Domain: EukaryaFile:Three toed sloth female.JPG


Membrane bound organelles

True nucleus

Sexual reproduction

 --> At this taxonomic level, it is

 interesting to know that C.

maculatum is even related to a sloth!


 Kingdom: Plantae                                                    


Cell walls composed of cellulose

Presence of chlorophyll


 --> As we explore deeper into to the

phylogeny of C. maculatum, relative species become more narrow. At the kingdom

 Plantae, C. maculatum is related the delicious, sweet potato.


Phylum: Magnoliophyta File:Maize.JPG

Flowering plants (angiosperms)




Enclosed seeds

Double fertilization

 --> At the phylum Magnoliophyta, Conium maculatum is considered to be related to

 a dinner time classic ... corn! You wouldn't want to eat C. maculatum though ...


Class: Magnoliopsida File:Digested fly.JPG



Net-veined leaves

Vascular bundles in a ring enclosing a pith

 --> Narrowing down the taxonomic level

 even more, we can consider the Venus

 FlyTrap to be related to C. maculatum at

 the class Magnoliopsida.


Order: Apiales File:Ginseng1.JPG

Flowers in umbels

Separate petals



 --> Ginseng is an edible herb that many

of us consume and at the taxonomic order

 Apiales, it is related to C. maculatum.



File:Daucus carota Wortel Amsterdamse bak gladheid.jpg

Family: Apiaceae

Carrot/parsley family

Aromatic plants

Long, hollow stems

 --> When looking at the family Apiaceae,

 C. maculatum is related to one of my

 childhood favorites ... the carrot!



Genus: Conium File:Conium maculatum Lincolnshire 2.jpg

Highly toxic biennials


Species: Conium maculatum

Poison hemlock

 --> Finally, we reach the most

 specific taxonomic level, the species.

 Pictured to the right is the beautiful

 but deadly Conium maculatum




Conium maculatum Phylogenetic Trees



     Pictured above is a phylogeny that represents Conium maculatum. I constructed

 this tree from the lecture notes given by my organismal biology professors at the

 University of Wisconsin - La Crosse. C. maculatum is represented as part of the

 super-group Archaeplastida and falls under the kingdom Plantae, also known as the

land plants. Some other organisms that come close into relation are red algae,

 chlorophytes and charaphyceans. This phylogeny uses a cladistic approach for its

 classification. This means that the classification is based upon evolutionary history

of groups of organisms.



Related Organisms

     Pictured above is another phylogeny that might help you better understand what

 kinds of organisms are more closely related to C. maculatum. As stated previously,

C. maculatum falls under the family Apiaceae. Though C. maculatum is not listed

 under the Apiaceae family in the phylogeny shown above,  you can see that

 organisms like celery, parsley and dill are close in relation to C. maculatum as they

 fall under the same taxonomic family.


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