Leaflets three, wipe with me?

Toxicodendron radicans aka Poison Ivy
 Oh summer! Wonderful long days, firefly studded evenings, suntanned arms, and an itchy rash between my fingers all tell me that the entomology fieldwork season is under way.  I almost always have poison ivy on my fingers by the time the solstice comes around.  This is usually from reaching into poorly directed sweep nets, and tying bootlaces that have tromped through fields of this intresting (if inconvenient) native plant.

While it seems that the rash spreads itself up my arms, this is not the case.  Different parts of my arms and hands react at varying rates and severities to the same exposure to urushiol, the chemical that causes the allergic reaction.  Sometimes I get repeated exposures if I haven't washed everything that came in contact with the plant (typically my boot laces) but the oozing rash itself does not beget more rash.

This post was brought to mind when my wife brought home a new brand of toilet paper.  I'm all about sustainable products (especially when thay are actually eco-friendly and not just marketed as such) - but did this brand take 'going green' too far?  The graphic designer responsible is either having a good laugh, or they need to take botany 101.
hmmm.  Cause for concern?


samantha at: June 16, 2012 at 9:30 AM said...

HAHAHAHA! I would have totally designed that toilet paper the same way thinking it was cute. Aren't other nicer plants similar looking? I currently have a poison ivy rash between my fingers, on my wrist and on my elbow. It showed up 1 day after our week long beach vacation where I didn't touch a plant or anything near plants... or so I think. No idea how I got it! C and N don't have it.

Unknown at: June 18, 2012 at 9:30 PM said...

I suppose we could be optimistic and call it box elder, or fragrant sumac. That actually might be a good marketing ploy - fragrant sumac for the most fragrant room in the house : )

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