Here’s how to identify poison ivy and treat it

Published: October 27, 2020

Learn what poison ivy looks like, how it spreads, and where you can find it

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If you love to frequent the outdoors, you’re going to want to learn about poison ivy—specifically how to identify it, where you can find it, what the rash looks like, how to treat it, and how to dispose of the plant. In this helpful video, Cottage Coach Adam Holman tells you everything you need to know in order to prevent you from getting a nasty rash.

When poison ivy blisters pop does it spread?

The simple answer is no. In order for the rash to spread, your skin must come into contact with the sap, also known as urushiol oil, from the plant. If the oil has not been removed from surfaces that you then touch, it can trigger an allergic reaction.

Are there any environmentally friendly ways of getting rid of poison ivy near a shoreline?

Poison ivy is so toxic and pernicious once established that you shouldn’t try burning, cutting, pulling, or digging it out. Learn how to get rid of poison ivy safely.

What does poison ivy look like?

The poison ivy plant has three leaves, the middle being longer than the two outside leaves. According to Health Canada, they appear reddish in colour in the spring before turning green in the summer, and eventually different shades of yellow, orange and red in autumn. As you will learn in the video, the leaves and stalks can vary in size.

Can poison ivy spread from person to person?

Yes, if a person has sap on them and another person then comes into contact with the sap. It can also attach itself to clothing and other items, and if you subsequently touch those items it can spread. You’ll want to wash affected clothing separate from uncontaminated clothing. The Quebec government advises using hot water and soap when washing, and to do so several times. When handling the clothes you should wear rubber gloves to prevent contamination and further spread.