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  plant identification


poison ivy/oak/sumac plant identification:

There is no simple way to describe what poison ivy, oak and sumac look like. The plants grow almost everywhere in the United States, except Hawaii, Alaska and some desert areas of the Southwest. In addition, the plants do not typically grow in elevations above 5,000 feet. The prevalence and structure of each plant vary by region and season. However, there are some general features specific to each that are noted to the left.



Poison Ivy
Poison ivy is the most common and widespread plant of the three. Its leaves are characterized by three or five serrated-edge, pointed leaflets and assume bright colors in the fall. Poison ivy grows as a vine or free-standing plant in the East, Midwest and South and as a shrub in the far northern and western United States.

Poison Oak
Poison oak has three leaves and grows as a shrub in the East and the West, where it is most prevalent. The plant produces whitish flowers from August to November that dry and can remain for months. Its leaves also form bright colors during the fall season

Poison Sumac
Poison sumac has seven to 13 staggered leaflets with one on the tip of the plant. It grows as a shrub or small tree and is found mainly in the Eastern United States, primarily in peat bogs and swamps.

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