The flat-topped, yellow-flowered clusters of the Early Meadow Parsnip sway just above the grassy crests in fields and meadows, along roadside and swamp land from April to June. It is one of the earliest flowering of the Parsley Family. The hollow, juicy, upright stalk, which grows from one to two and a half feet in height, is smooth, sparingly branched, and is finely grooved. It is often tinged with red, and when bruised or broken emits an aromatic fragrance not unlike parsley or fresh varnish. The leaves, which are sparingly intervalled, have two, or usually three, lance-shaped leaflets with slender, tapering tips and sharply toothed margins. They are smooth-surfaced and thin-textured. The lower leaves have long stems, while those of the upper ones are flat and shorter. The tiny flower has five yellow petals which are curved toward the prominent stamen.
They are gathered into many little separated clusters that in turn are grouped into a broad, open, flat-topped and radiating floral disk or umbel. It is common almost everywhere from New Brunswick to Ontario, South Dakota, Florida, and Texas.