Family: Anacardiaceae

Scientific Name: Toxicodendron rybergii

Common Name: Poison Ivy, Western Poison Ivy

DescriptionAn invasive, low growing woody plant that is very toxic to the touch. All parts of this plant are poisonous.
Plant TypeWeeds
Hardiness ZoneCold hardy to at least #4
Sunlightfull to shade, seems to prefer edges of woods in the semi-shade
Soil & Siteaverage
Flowerssmall, 1/8" green flowers grow from branching clusters in the axils
Fruitwhite waxy berries, ate by birds
LeavesA compound leaf with 3 leaflets the center one being the largest. The leaf edges are entire or a few coarse teeth. Leaves alternate on the stem. They emerge in the spring with a bronze sheen; fall color is red to deep burgundy red depending on the amount of sun.
Dimensionslow less than a foot
MaintenanceDifficult to remove once established.
PropagationWho wants to??????? Reported to have been imported to places in Europe and used as a ground cover plant for erosion control.
Misc FactsThis plant is listed in many sources as Rhus radicans, a catch all term for many types of look-alike poisonous plants.
Author's NotesOne day I was working in a new clients garden, I was on my hands and knees, working backwards pulling weeds. An than I noticed "what the #!#*" I was kneeling in Poison Ivy. Needless to say I got a bad case of redness, blisters and itching on my arms. Last year (2012) I bought a pair of long rubber gloves and carefully pulled out the plants and double bagged them. Some of the runners were 10-15 feet long. Gloves were also disposed. The worst thing about this experience is I didn't take any pictures. I missed a great photo opt.
Notes & ReferenceThe reaction from poison ivy is produced by an oil called Urushiol. It can remain on clothes and spread by touch.
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