Guard Yourself Against Contact With Poison Ivy

Aug 9, 2018

Credit SC Public Radio

Hello Gardeners, I’m Amanda McNulty with Clemson Extension and Making It Grow.  Recently   I noticed a red spot on my wrist which I attributed to an insect bite. Sadly, that was a misdiagnosis – turns out that in my summer mission to get unwanted vines and such out of established beds, I mistook a poison ivy vine for Virginia creeper and ended up with a bad outbreak on my arms. Both these native vines have hairy stems when mature and climbing on trees. The hairs are different – poison ivy has aerial roots while Virginia creeper has modified tendrils, but they look a lot alike when you are on your hands and knees  in a thicket of magnolia stems. Now I’ll wear a long sleeved shirt buttoned tight and good gardening gloves, all will go in the washing machine when I come inside along with my pants, socks,   shoes and a good dose of detergent.