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What the Young Leaves of Poison Ivy Look Like
I am often asked, "What does poison ivy look like?" Indeed, it's more than merely an academic question, since being able to identify the "itchy rash vine" with confidence can prevent you from an unfortunate encounter with it. The scientific name of the plant is Rhus radicans or Toxicodendron radicans. It's easy to remember the old rhyme "leaves of three, let it be, " but these photos will allow you to identify the plant both with and without leaves. While the... leaves are the most toxic part of the plant, contact with any part can cause an allergic reaction. It's important to learn what poison ivy looks like throughout the growing season. This leaf close-up shows plants that are less than a foot high.Continue to 2 of 10 below.
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Leaves of Young Poison Ivy Plants
Young poison ivy plants often start out in spring with reddish leaves. The plants are just barely off the ground but the oil can still rub off on the fabric of shoes and socks. It is possible to transfer the oil from your clothes to your skin. If you think your clothes have come in contact with poison ivy be careful removing the garment and wash the area afterward.Continue to 3 of 10 below.
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Mature Poison Ivy Plants
In mature poison ivy plants, the leaves are green, and they are about two feet high. Poison ivy vines often grow en masse, taking over an area and becoming the dominant plant.Continue to 4 of 10 below.
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Poison Ivy Flower Buds
People often don't associate something as nasty as poison ivy with flowers, but yes, this weed does bloom! Your sense of justice may perhaps be mollified, however, by the fact that the blossoms aren't especially attractive.Continue to 5 of 10 below.
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Poison Ivy Flowers
Poison Ivy produces rather small unremarkable blossoms. Walking quickly past a patch of poison ivy plants in bloom, you would hardly notice the individual blossoms.Continue to 6 of 10 below.
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Poison Ivy Berries
Poison Ivy plants also grow berries, which are of course just as toxic as the rest of the plant. A distinguishing trait of poison ivy is the color of its mature berries. When they ripen (in late summer to early fall), they turn from a pale green to a whitish color.Continue to 7 of 10 below.
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Poison Ivy Leaf
Poison ivy leaf on plants can trail over the ground or climb. The vines of Rhus radicans produce aerial roots that allow them to climb up rough surfaces like wood and stone.Continue to 8 of 10 below.
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Poison Ivy Fall Foliage
The green summer color of poison ivy's foliage yields to brilliant fall foliage in red, yellow or orange. The autumn brilliance of poison ivy's foliage is due to the anthocyanin pigments characteristic of the plant family to which poison ivy belongs, namely, the cashew family (Anacardiaceae).Continue to 9 of 10 below.
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Poison Ivy Red Autumn Foliage
Some poison ivy plants come "full circle," displaying a reddish fall foliage. In this regard, poison ivy reminds me of red maple trees. The latter display red buds in spring that hold a hint of what their gorgeous fall foliage will look like.Continue to 10 of 10 below.
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Poison Ivy Aerial Roots
Have you wondered what those hairy vines are climbing up trees? That's poison ivy! The "hairs" being the vines' aerial roots. Unfortunately, those hairs are as toxic as the rest of the plant.