Poison Ivy

Jonny

Well-Known Member
Location
Buffalo
My personal policy is to put some effort into limiting exposure. Try not to make saw dust or chips from it. If it’s thin enough I’ll use pruners, loppers, or an axe to cut it at the ground, then come back weeks or months later to prune or remove the tree. It usually pulls off easy if it’s been dead for a little while. The tendrils left behind could probably still ruin your day.
Nitrile gloves underneath work gloves then all gloves go in the trash after along with the vine.
I spray my pruner and lopper blades with degreaser after.
I’ve never had a reaction to it and I’m not trying to. I worked with a fool who swore he was immune to it until he had a reaction from handling it with a no-fucks-given attitude.

Don’t let poison vines end up in a burn pile, if the brush from the tree is to be burned later. The smoke is bad I hear.

This might not be very ethical but I sometimes try to scare customers away with stupid high prices on shit I don’t want to work on, which means poison vines and dead poplars growing near primarys. Sometimes I’m a sucker for elderly folks that could use a break.
 

Jonny

Well-Known Member
Location
Buffalo
There’s some info if you use the search function here too. This one is helpful.
 

Reach

Well-Known Member
Location
Atglen, PA
We do not have an official company policy, here in this part of PA it’s just part of the job, in large part because it’s on nearly every job. We try to avoid it, keep those who are allergic away from it as much as possible - if there’s a lot of it, I will typically handle it myself, because I am truly immune. I’ve been bare handing it for 20+ years and never had a reaction.
 

96coal449

Well-Known Member
Location
earth
I worked with a fool who swore he was immune to it until he had a reaction from handling it with a no-fucks-given attitude.
I have that "immunity."

That is I don't generally have a reaction to it, but I don't punish myself in it either. I have built up a tolerance from limited exposure. I think it is more potent in early spring when the leaves are glistening red and I've noticed this is when I am most subjective to a bad reaction. I noted this when I was in a mess like that and it was hot and humid out. The pores of my skin were wide open. Tree was an add on to the original contract. I was not prepared for it at all. Told myself I'll be fine. My reactions are usually minimal and easy to control.

Not that time.
 

Treezybreez

Well-Known Member
Location
Lancaster, SC
I don't seem to get it very bad if I make an effort to wash off my arms with a hose and Windex or a good dish detergent. If I don't know that I have been in it, then I seem to get it.
 

cerviarborist

Very stable member
Location
Florida, USA
I've worked some assignments for utility clients. Poison Ivy/ Oak/Sumac were all considered hazards to be mitigated. Find ways to avoid contact if at all possible, if not, limit contact as much as possible and once done, wash yourself, using lots of soap and a washcloth or hand towel to get some friction going to get the sticky urushiol off you. Just another thing to be mindful of and to mitigate, like heat exhaustion, dehydration or any number of other hazards. Definitely not considered a reason to idle a crew. We were also provided Technu pre and post contact wet wipes, as well as Technu soap.

I'm really sensitive to urushiol, and waded through some chest deep thickets of poison oak on assignments. I always washed thoroughly at the end of the day and never suffered an outbreak.
 

BoomBitch222

Active Member
Location
Roseville
We do not have an official company policy, here in this part of PA it’s just part of the job, in large part because it’s on nearly every job. We try to avoid it, keep those who are allergic away from it as much as possible - if there’s a lot of it, I will typically handle it myself, because I am truly immune. I’ve been bare handing it for 20+ years and never had a reaction.
You’re a lucky dude, I wish so much I didnt react so I could handle it instead of it being a big deal and my crew bitching a fit
 

Jzack605

Active Member
Location
Long island
Does not go through chipper is the main policy point where I work.

I get bad reactions. So if I know something of mine touched it, it gets washed ASAP. Any part can give you a rash, even the stems in dormancy. Dead vines can contain the urisol for up to 5 years. So save your herbicides and pruners.

There is no such thing as immunity or building up a tolerance. Although I have heard of a proven preventative medication?

Excellent video on it and how to handle getting the oils on you. The poison ivy specific soap is marginally more effective than dishwasher soap. The main thing is abrasion and being thorough.
 
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cerviarborist

Very stable member
Location
Florida, USA
You’re a lucky dude, I wish so much I didnt react so I could handle it instead of it being a big deal and my crew bitching a fit
You've got to wash like you got all smeared up with axle grease. That's about the consistency of urushiol, the active ingredient in Poison Ivy. You can't just wash one hand with another and expect to take it off. Plain old soap and a hard scrub with a washcloth will remove it at days end before it has a chance to get to work. I use good old Dr. Bronners and a hand towel. Keeps me welt free.
 

cerviarborist

Very stable member
Location
Florida, USA
I'm lucky I don't react to PI, Oak, or Sumac.
If I've been in it for a long time I'll wash with Dawn dish soap and a soft scrub brush.
When I was a kid I never broke out from it, until I went on a Boy Scout camping trip one weekend when I had a bad cold. I guess my resistance was lower because the ivy made up for all the other times in one episode. Now I've developed near super-human abilities to spot the stuff so that I can avoid it.
 

Jzack605

Active Member
Location
Long island
I help at least two clients a year with the realization they have significant PI on their property. They often have no idea and explain they are constantly breaking out with something. Often times they do not even go into the areas directly where it is, but rather it is from their dog or garden hose running through it. At least that's the most likely scenario if they are telling the truth.
 

BoomBitch222

Active Member
Location
Roseville
My personal policy is to put some effort into limiting exposure. Try not to make saw dust or chips from it. If it’s thin enough I’ll use pruners, loppers, or an axe to cut it at the ground, then come back weeks or months later to prune or remove the tree. It usually pulls off easy if it’s been dead for a little while. The tendrils left behind could probably still ruin your day.
Nitrile gloves underneath work gloves then all gloves go in the trash after along with the vine.
I spray my pruner and lopper blades with degreaser after.
I’ve never had a reaction to it and I’m not trying to. I worked with a fool who swore he was immune to it until he had a reaction from handling it with a no-fucks-given attitude.

Don’t let poison vines end up in a burn pile, if the brush from the tree is to be burned later. The smoke is bad I hear.

This might not be very ethical but I sometimes try to scare customers away with stupid high prices on shit I don’t want to work on, which means poison vines and dead poplars growing near primarys. Sometimes I’m a sucker for elderly folks that could use a break.
Its been on almost every job we’ve done this week and Im just sick of dealing with my crew wigging out and my boss being pissed, we need a better protocol than my bosses bs “Just throw your gloves away afterward”. I made him order throw-away coveralls and better gloves. In cases where its just a few sprouts on the ground I just throw something over it but at one place we went today it was EVERYWHERE and I told the boss “Jimmy cracks corn and I dont give a fuck, we’re not doing this” lol
 

BoomBitch222

Active Member
Location
Roseville
You've got to wash like you got all smeared up with axle grease. That's about the consistency of urushiol, the active ingredient in Poison Ivy. You can't just wash one hand with another and expect to take it off. Plain old soap and a hard scrub with a washcloth will remove it at days end before it has a chance to get to work. I use good old Dr. Bronners and a hand towel. Keeps me welt free.
Dr.Bronners huh? Ill pick some up
 

Jonny

Well-Known Member
Location
Buffalo
If it was up to me I’d say crew members ought to see an extra 50$ or 100$ at the end of the day. Tack it onto the quote for pain and suffering.
 

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