“Leaves of three, let it be!”
Poison Ivy grows in a vine or as a shrub across North America. Poison ivy can appear in fields, wooded areas, river banks and along the road.
If you have ever come in contact with it from working in the yard or from a hike and found a red, itchy rash on your exposed skin, you have probably encountered poison ivy.
Poison ivy carries a specific oil called urushiol in its leaves and roots that cause an allergic flare up in 80% of people.
(according to the Centers for Disease Control and Prevention)
These poisons remain active even if the plant itself is dead!
Identifying Poison Ivy
The leaf shape and color is dependent upon the type of poison ivy and what time of year it is.
The leaves on the plant can be a dull color or shiny. They have pointed tips and thin roots.
In the summer months across North America, the plant will grow yellow flowers with white berries.
In the fall the berries and flowers die and the leaves become red or yellow.
This is the typical seasonal color change: the green fades to yellow and dark brown to black blotches develop.
At this time of year, looking for three leaves will not work.
The asymmetric leaf shape and the color pattern are the best key indicators in autumn.
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