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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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Monday - July 25, 2011

From: Kitchener, ON
Region: Canada
Topic: Poisonous Plants
Title: What caused bump after walk in woods from Ontario
Answered by: Barbara Medford

QUESTION:

I recently went for a walk in the woods near a stream. When I got to the river my leg had a little bump. It wasn't itching. I got home, it swelled even bigger. Can you tell me what plant I bumped into? Thank you

ANSWER:

Here is a list of the Poisonous Trees and Shrubs of Ontario. All three listed are native to Ontario:

Menispermum canadense (Common moonseed) - only berries are toxic if eaten. Pictures.

Toxicodendron vernix (Poison sumac) - all parts poisonous. Pictures 

Toxicodendron radicans (Eastern poison ivy) - all parts poisonous. Pictures

Our personal opinion is that you probably were stung  by some insect. Being in the woods near a stream, the best guess is a mosquito, but you could also have brushed against a plant with a spider or ants on it that didn't take well to your intrusion.

Our advice: if it has swollen more, spread to a rash, or you are having allergic reactions, see a doctor.

 

 

 

 

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