GardenDishes

dishin' the DIRT on hit and myth landscaping

Archive for the tag “Dawn dish detergent”

The Strike of The Poison Sisters (ivy, sumac, & oak)

Next time, I'm hoping to get an earful of the Pointer Sisters instead of the poison sisters.

Next time, I’m hoping to get an earful of the Pointer Sisters instead of The Poison Sisters. (This is AFTER 3 days of steroids & with a load of cream on it to stop the itching.) 

My friend Kylee announced last week she had contracted a common gardening disease. My exposure coincided with hers, although we live nowhere close to one another. And we aren’t unique this time of year. As seedlings emerge in the warm spring sun, so do we gardeners. For the 85% of Americans who react to some degree to a plant oil called urushiol (yoo-ROO-shee-all), spring springs with more than we’d hoped.

My allergic reaction to urushiol – found in The Poison Sisters (oak, sumac, & ivy) – seems to be increasing annually. Or even semi-annually as I’ve gotten it spring AND fall in the last year. WebMD says it can either become more severe with additional exposures, or go away altogether as you’re desensitized. Mine is not going away. To be honest, the fact I’m more often around it since we bought our farm probably explains the increase in frequency, if not the increase in reaction.

Here’s info on what your skin‘s reaction might look like, and here are photos so you can spot The Poison Sisters before they spot you.  My friend Kylee Baumlee – co-author with Jenny Peterson of INDOOR PLANT DECOR from St. Lynn’s Press – shares her suggestions on how to get rid of the plant once you find it on her blog.

Zanfel 4 pois ivy

If you don’t catch the poison ivy exposure in time to wash it away, this scratches the itch.

Unfortunately, once again I had to go the steroids route to get it under control. Next time I’ll do it differently.

My friend Edgar Graham discovered if he immediately washes the area with DAWN dish detergent to cut the oil, he rarely has a reaction to the poison ivy. If he misses a spot washing and the dermatitis appears, he dabs a product called Zanfel to any bumps and within a few minutes the itch is gone and in a few days the rash disappears. Why Dawn? Maybe the Poison Sisters and Tony Orlando’s girls are like oil and water.

This photo, from Mother Nature Network, proves that DAWN dish detergent is for the birds. Or the ducks, anyway.

This photo, from Mother Nature Network, proves that DAWN dish detergent is for the birds. Or the ducks, anyway. My friend Edgar proves it’s effective on fighting The Poison Sisters, too.

 

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