Poison Ivy Goes Uber

More CO2 means more poisonous plants

Scientists at Duke University discovered that poison ivy is all about carbon dioxide, and that pumping CO2 into plant beds actually made growth more vigorous, and poison more potent. Basically, Super Poison Ivy.

If that wasn’t enough, with our greenhouse gas emissions going up, up, up, there’s going to be plenty of C-Double-Os to support this newest form of floral evil.

It makes me wonder what else global warming has in store for us: broccoli that feels pain? trees that wipe their asses with you? I mean, really, how far away are we from huge, man-eating Venus fly traps that sing musical numbers and say, “Hello, baaaaaaby!” whenever you pass one?

There’s something to think about when you’re driving to and from your mailbox.

Poison ivy permeates the woodlands (and suburbs) east of the Mississippi, and if you’ve hiked in the eastern US, chances are you’ve seen the stuff and felt its calling card: that itchy, rashy, blistery nastiness.

When I was a kid, my friend’s sister was at a bonfire where some moron threw poison ivy onto the flames. She inhaled some of the smoke, and got poison ivy IN HER LUNGS. The doctors had to scrape it all out.

If you see poison ivy (and you will) leave it alone, or feed it to your pet goat. Goats are the only animals that can chew down the stuff.

The older you get, the more susceptible you are to poison ivy’s rash-causing resin, so just because you haven’t had a reaction before doesn’t mean you can be careless.

So it’s best to leave poison ivy alone. And when you’re looking for a leaf to use as TP, remember the old adage: leaves of three, let it be.

And don’t ever, ever throw it on your campfire.

—Casey Lyons

In the Garden - It Eats CO2 for Breakfast (NYtimes)