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Q. Who is Mr. Smarty Plants?

A: There are those who suspect Wildflower Center volunteers are the culpable and capable culprits. Yet, others think staff members play some, albeit small, role. You can torture us with your plant questions, but we will never reveal the Green Guru's secret identity.

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Ask Mr. Smarty Plants is a free service provided by the staff and volunteers at the Lady Bird Johnson Wildflower Center.

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Wednesday - November 12, 2008

From: Woodbridge , VA
Region: Mid-Atlantic
Topic: Pests, Poisonous Plants
Title: Topical treatment for poison ivy rash
Answered by: Nan Hampton

QUESTION:

I would like to know a topical treatment for the poison ivy rash

ANSWER:

There are lots of over-the-counter medications and home remedies for treating poison ivy that you can find by Googling "poison ivy remedy".  Mr. Smarty Plants does not have a "silver bullet" remedy but can offer this advice in brief: 

1.  Learn to recognize poison ivy and avoid it. ("Leaves of three; let it be.")

2.  If you inadvertently come into contact with it, thoroughly clean the area with rubbing alcohol and then soap and water.  There are even commercially available neutralizing agents (Google "poison ivy cleanser") that you can carry with you to use in the field if you come in contact with poison ivy.  This will at least reduce the symptoms. 

3.  Read this same advice from wikiHow in more detail.

4.  If you have a severe reaction to poison ivy, see your physician for medication to relieve your symptoms.


Toxicodendron radicans

Toxicodendron radicans

Toxicodendron radicans

 

 

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