Friday, May 30, 2014

Young Poison Ivy

Most of us are familiar with poison ivy once it grows up enough to be a nuisance, but what about when it's first up?

This is a photo of a very young plant. Notice there are two oval leaves on either side of the stem. (As seen in this photo, those are the leaves at 12 and 6 o'clock - the top and bottom of the photo.) These leaves are called basal leaves, a term which refers to the lowest leaves on a stem.

When poison ivy plants are young, this is the only time they break the rules about 3 leaves and alternate leaf patterns. Pretty soon the basal leaves will drop off and there will only be the patterns of 3 leaflets.

This plant is growing in my yard. I found in it a flower bed a few weeks ago. For now, I'm letting it live so we can all see how it develops and grows.

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