Poison Ivy, Oak, and Sumac Information Center

Is This Poison Ivy?

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Submitted by:  Bruce Peterson
Date Submitted: 5/14/2003
Location: western New York

Question Asked: I live in western New York and we have small trees at the side of our house that has thorny branches with seven leaves. On the ground are several plants growing that have seven leaves on them. I have had what I think to be poison ivy/sumac/oak rashes for 10 days now and want to eliminate the plants which I got this from.

Answer: Hi Bruce,

Funny timing on your pictures as I just discovered a batch of those same plants as in your first picture and went through the identification process. This plant is a Mayapple (padophyllum peltatum) and ranges from the east to Texas and from southern Ontario to Florida.

The second picture looks to be a honey locust or similar tree. These have thorns on the trunk (sumac does not). Poison sumac apparently is less of an issue to us than poison ivy or oak as it prefers swampy conditions. I will state that poison sumac is my weakest to identify but there are some reliable reference guides I use to assist me.

Perhaps you got the rash from elsewhere? Or are allergic to another plant on the property?