Poison Ivy

I never in my life got poison ivy until last year when we moved here; this place is apparently crawling with the satanic plant.  But never having worried about it before, I’m not very good at identifying it, and now I’m paranoid, so I think that any plant with leaves in triplets is poison.

Some of these look like they’re definitely poison; others I’m not sure.  What do you think?

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Posted by Anthony on 9 replies


01. May 17, 2009 at 06:58pm by Heidi:

Here’s my opinion on the ivy situation....
I would buy gardening gloves before weeding!
Plants #1, 2, 3 and 5 probably not poison ivy
Plant #4 probably poison ivy
Plant #6 yes poison ivy
Good luck!

02. May 18, 2009 at 04:04pm by Kimberly:

I think 1,2,4, and 6 look like poison. I agree with Heidi that 3 and 5 are probably not.

03. May 18, 2009 at 09:58pm by Anthony:

Thanks for your input!

About the gloves: I will wear disposable rubber gloves if and when I decide to tangle with this demonic weed.  The real problem is the rest of your body.  If you think you might have touched anything which might have touched the poison, then you have to take your clothes off without touching them, and you can’t let them touch anything else, and then you have to wash them without letting them touch the laundry chute nor the washer nor any other clothes, and you have to get yourself into the shower without touching anything.

This stuff makes bees and ticks and spiders seem like a walk in the park.

04. May 19, 2009 at 07:36am by Rolly:

Here’s a  pulling procedure I found.  Good luck with that.

05. May 19, 2009 at 09:41am by Heidi:

Do they make spray to kill poison ivy??  I would look for some type of spray to kill the plants.....  Sounds like a nightmare to deal with -- I guess we’ll keep Cailin, Erin and Megan from running around your yard!  :)
I’m no expert at all, but I think that poison has three shiny, reddish leaves per stem. 

06. May 19, 2009 at 12:45pm by Anthony:

@Rolly: that sounds like a good procedure.  It’s absurd and funny in a sad way but that’s pretty much exactly what I had in mind.

@Heidi: yeah, supposedly Round-Up or similar weed killer will kill it.  But the problem is that, dead or alive, the stuff will still give you the exact same rash.  Regarding the leaves, apparently they’re small and red in the spring, then turn green as they grow; but they’re not the only plant to do that.

Nuking it from orbit seems like the only way.

07. Jun 8, 2009 at 02:45am by Kristin:

I was going to say 1,2, and 4 are poison, 3 and 5 aren’t, and 6 is questionable. The leaves look like the wrong shape on #6, but there are white spots on them, and the plant looks vine-like.

Good luck with the extermination and hope you don’t end up with kudzu in its place.

08. Jun 11, 2009 at 10:56am by Mom:

I’m sure you’ve done your research already but try checking out these sites:

That second site is quite informative!

However, as a small boy you played in any wooded area you could find never being affected by this monster.  Hmmmm............

09. Jun 12, 2009 at 10:17am by Mary:

Photos 1 and 6 are poison ivy - the others are not. Roundup will kill the plant but don’t touch even the dead plant with bare hands - it is the oil from the plant that creates the problem. Roundup will also kill any other plant it comes in contact with so be careful you don’t zap plants you want to keep.

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