An Ammanford dad has been left wanting to cut his own leg off after receiving horrific injuries following coming into contact with hogweed while gardening at his home.

Nathan Davies has undergone three operations including surgery to open his leg from the knee cap to the ankle bone.

The estate agent has been told by specialists that he many need skin grafts to repair the damage after he came close to losing the muscle from this calf and being unable to walk again.

Nathan, who has an eight month old son, now wants to tell his story in an attempt to warn others about the dangers of the plant.

The 32-year-old was carrying out gardening work with his father on Sunday, May 20 - when temperatures soared across Wales.

"I was wearing shorts - because it was a boiling hot day," said Nathan, who is the brother of the late Ryan Davies, founder of Ryan4Leukaemia.

"We were trimming the hedges and plants, so I had a few cuts and scrapes - but I didn't think anything of it."

By Tuesday, blisters started to appear on Nathan's leg.

"They looked like burns but then they started to get really big," he said.

"I tried not to show it, because I've got a young baby at home. So I tried to pretend I wasn't in pain and I covered it up with trousers."

He collapsed in agony on the Friday and was immediately rushed to A&E in Llanelli.

"I waited two hours and a nurse wanted to send me home with some antibiotics," he said.

"But a doctor took one look at my leg and told me I needed an emergency operation.

"Around 20 minutes later I was in a gown, knocked out and my leg was opened up."

His injuries were also complicated by subcutaneous emphysema - when gas or air becomes trapped under a cut or wound – and doctors were forced to open his leg from the knee cap to the ankle bone - leaving the wound open and bandaged after his skin was eaten by the infection.

"It was like Rice Krispies to touch," said Nathan, who is still in hospital.

"After the initial operation I had to have another one the day after to put in some red mesh - like the sort you see on a boxing glove.

"The gash was around two inches wide and 15 inches long down my thigh.

"The pain was so bad I couldn't even stand - I still can't put any pressure or weight on my leg.

"A part of me just wants to cut my leg off from the knee.

"I've never experienced pain like this in my life.

"It's been tough - especially not being able to see my son.”

Nathan has been told that he will need a fourth operation on Friday before a decision will be made regarding a skin graft.

Carwyn Templeton, who works for South Wales Knotweed Removal, said: “I would urge everyone to familiarise themselves with Common Hogweed, especially those with young children.

“Whilst the severity of Nathan’s injuries are thankfully rare, this just demonstrates how dangerous the plant can be.

"Anyone who walks through areas of dense scrub whilst wearing shorts and t-shirt is asking for trouble.

“Few will be aware that the plant has a toxic sap, which when it comes in contact with bare skin, in direct sunlight can cause severe blistering and reddening.

“The simple remedy is to wear suitable clothing such as trousers and long sleeve tops.

"I have seen the plant growing within a children’s park in the Amman Valley and have made the council aware of the situation."