Poison Ivy Coming to Life in the North

Spring poison ivy

Now that spring has finally arrived, the poison ivy is going bonkers, growing fast up here in the north. Down south, it is already in full leaf, with flowers and berries not far behind.

Take a look at this growth tip of a ground-growing poison ivy vine. Yup, it is very red. Also notice the alternating, left-right pattern of leaves coming off the main stem.

Then notice out there are little growths in the "crotch" of each growing stem. Those may become the flowers, then berries.

Finally, notice how the growing tip is red and soft, but it comes out of a woody stem: as poison ivy is a woody vine, you rarely see it without some of the gray bark that helps ID the plant. If there is no woody vine, then the plant is a vine that doesn't survive the winter; hence, not poison ivy.