Posted by: Debbie Abrams Kaplan | September 1, 2014

The Dangers of DIY Landscaping

Last week I trimmed half the house’s bushes, and a vine growing on the side of the house. It never occurred to me that it was poison ivy. This is the worst of it (below). It’s on the other arm too, spots on both legs and my torso. Fortunately it missed my face and hands.


I made everyone local look at it – now it’s your turn.

I trimmed the other half of the bushes today. Keeping my fingers crossed I did not get more poison ivy from the clippers (I used different gloves and wiped down the clippers with Clorox wipes). Apparently the Urushiol oil on poison ivy can stay on things forever, or at least years, and irritate your skin if you touch it later. Yay! 

But instead of poison ivy today, I definitely found evidence of our recent roofing in the bushes. Thanks Deegan Roofing for leaving us with more roofing nails that we can use for another project! 


Thanks for the nails, Deegan Roofing!




  1. I got poison ivy for the first time this year Debbie. Found a product in Walmart that you put on that prevents you from getting poison ivy. (Didn’t buy it but it’s worth a try…forget the name but look near the Benedryl cream and aloe). More of the poison ivy came out days later so beware. The itching drove me crazy for quite a while even with calamine lotion and Benedryl cream. Next time…hire a landscaper like I did 🙂

    • Interesting idea – something to prevent poison ivy. I guess you’d have to expect you might get it, to put it on ahead of time, like doing yard work or going camping (one more thing to rub on in addition to sunblock and bug repellent!). Sorry you had it too – this is my second time. Hey, it’s good for the holiday letter, right? The only thing that’s given me any relief is ice, which Dori suggested. And I was in the ocean yesterday and it didn’t itch at all while out there – distraction or salt water?

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