Friday, August 10, 2012

How to identify poison ivy

A general rule of thumb for avoiding poison ivy is "leaves of three, let it be." If you follow this mantra, chances are you will indeed avoid poison ivy because in all seasons it comes in leaves of three. Since summer encourages visits to forests/parks (areas harboring poison ivy), it is important to be able to identify poison ivy to avoid having your week ruined. Poison ivy has notched leaves, not uniformly ridged leaves, and its leaf formations are rarely symmetrical. Also, poison ivy leaves are usually wide at the base of the leaf.

When poison ivy begins to grow, its leaves are particularly shiny. As the plant ages, the leaves lose their shine and become dull. Another tip for avoiding poison ivy is to pay special attention to the edge of forests, fields, and paved surfaces because poison ivy commonly grows on such boundaries. Above is a picture of poison ivy in the summer. See if you can identify the aforementioned characteristics.

Above is how poison ivy looks in the autumn. Like many leaves in autumn, poison ivy leaves can be colorful, so don't be fooled by the appealing red and yellow leaves.

Pictured above is poison ivy in the spring. Although poison ivy remains primarily green in the spring, some leaves can be red.

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