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Poison ivy and oak can be tricky during the cooler times of
year. The leaves change color and start to fall off the stems
making it difficult to identify the plants. Unfortunately, the
rash-causing urushiol is in all parts of the plants, including the
stems, and may cause a rash without you knowing you touched it. So
here are a few tips on how to avoid poison ivy and oak.
- Avoid touching leafless vines. Poison ivy and oak lose their
leaves in the fall and winter so you may come in contact with
urushiol and not know it.
- When pulling plants out of the ground, wrap plastic bags around
them first to give yourself a protective barrier. Throw away the
plants inside the plastic bags.
- Wear gloves and long sleeves to help protect yourself from
coming in contact with poison plants.
- If you think you may have been in contact with plants that
might be poison ivy, wash your clothing through 2 cycles using a
detergent that is tough on grease.
- Remember the "leaves of three" mantra when it comes to poison
ivy and oak. During the winter they may range from bright orange to
brilliant red before the fall off the stems.
- As a habit, wash with Tecnu Original Outdoor Cleanser or Tecnu
Extreme Poison Ivy Scrub after working in your yard to remove any
urushiol from your skin.