Updated: Jan 3, 2021
Poison ivy and I have become old friends over the years since I've lived in my house in Hockley Valley. I had never encountered it before and didn't even know what it looked like until the first summer I lived here. Unknowingly I got into it and after a few days the backs of my legs began itching. I had gone to visit my cousin for a couple of days and I was about to scratch the backs of my legs off it was so itchy and on top of that my legs were oozing fluid. My cousin enlightened me and told me it was poison ivy and that we should put jewel weed on it. I didn't know what jewel weed was either. LOL. So fast forward to this year... My adorable little dogs, Luke and Lola love to chase chipmunks and the chipmunks love to antagonize them. So one day, they are running around this tree in the bush barking and digging to try and get a chipmunk, The tree was a little further in the bush and I don't like leaving them out there since they would make a tasty treat for a coyote. Well they don't listen so well when they are chasing a chipmunk, so I had to pick both of them up and carry them back to the house; one under each arm. I knew I had stepped in poison ivy so I hopped in the shower and rinsed my legs off. Apparently I didn't shower too well though since days later my arms and my stomach started itching like crazy and getting blisters. The dogs had the poison ivy urushiol on their hair. Urushiol is the compound in the poison ivy. There isn't much you can do for poison ivy but some friends suggested Benadryl and wow has that worked to keep the itch at bay. I can always tell when it is wearing off because I start to get itchy. I also got out my Round Up Poison Ivy spray but to be honest there is so much of it in spots I don't think I will make much of a difference. I also hate wearing long pants and long sleeves when I'm doing things outside so my relationship with poison ivy will continue for years to come. I wanted to share with you what the leaves of poison ivy look like since I know many people don't know what it looks like and also what my poison ivy rash looks like. I even included a photo of my stomach. Ahh! Who else has had a run in with poison ivy? Anyone ever got it on their face? The neck is the closest I've come. Oh, and by the way, I wanted to mention that a lot of people think poison ivy is contagious. No it is not. People often transfer it because they didn't know they had come in contact with it and have it on them. Kind of like my dogs having it on their hair. Maybe you came in contact with it and then touched your lawn mower and now it is on the handle. This is how you can keep getting it. Once the rash starts it won't spread.
Here are some photos of my rash, a close up of the leaf and what I use to try and keep it at bay. This is nothing compared to what I had on the backs of my legs a number of years ago... The last photo shows the serration on the leaf. This is how you know it is poison ivy. In the fall it will turn red.