One innocent-looking plant harbors an agonizing secret, as a single brush of its leaves is enough to cause excruciating pain for months.
The Dendrocnide Moroides is known as “the world’s most dangerous plant,” with even morphine rendered ineffective against its venom, Nature reports.
The shrub has numerous names including the Gympie Gympie, Stinging Bush, Queensland Stinger and the Giant Australian Stinging Tree. It has also been called the “suicide plant,” website Discovery noted.
Like one of its names suggests, the plant is native to the rainforests of Australia, and can grow up to 115 feet tall.
It delivers a painful sting via tiny hairs covering the leaves and stem, which inject venom into the skin.
Nature explained: "When a passer-by brushes against the tree, the needles can inject their skin with a venom causing intense pain that sometimes lasts months and resists even morphine."
So painful and persistent are the effects of the "suicide plant," signs are often posted along forest tracks, particularly in Queensland, warning hikers and tourists of the danger lurking ahead.
A similar sign was erected next to the plant at Lullingstone Castle and The World Garden in England, which was displaying one of the vicious cuttings for tourists.
Next to the small shrub, which was in a cage, a sign read: "Danger. 'The world's most dangerous plant.' One touch can induce nine months of intense re-occurring throbbing pa! [sic]"