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ID jit
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Composting Poison Ivy Vine ???

We just had our first snow that stayed for over 24 hours and it was pretty nice out for early December, So I took part of my day off and waged the yearly battle with the ever-encroaching poison ivy vines. Is it okay to feed this stuff to one of my low maintenance pets (compost piles)?

Every year I face the same dilemma: can't burn it; can't leave it in a pile because it seems to regenerate from the pile; can't add it to the brush pile because I don't want to mess with it later ....

Was thinking of ways around the annual solution of clipping the stuff short enough to stuff into heavy duty black plastic bags, hitting it with 'round up' and eventually disposing of it.

If I can compost it, it saves a lot of other-than-optimal choices, What is the best option?

Thanks much.
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estorms
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Re: Composting Poison Ivy Vine ???

Poison ivy is very hardy. I have heard of a person who threw it on the roof of a shed in the spring and got the rash when they pulled it off the next winter. Another lady got it from her firewood. Some people get it from petting their dog. Cut it up, put it in a garbage bag, and send it to the landfill. If you have a lot, and you have the room, make a pile in an obscure part of your property and leave it there.

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rainbowgardener
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Re: Composting Poison Ivy Vine ???

No, no. Poison ivy, like regular ivy, breaks down very slowly and would add very little to your compost pile. AND as it breaks down it will release the urushiol, the compound that causes the rash, which can spread through your compost. EVENTUALLY, if you have a good, hot compost pile, it will break down further and become not so allergenic. But in the meantime, your whole compost pile could give you a rash, if you touch any of it. If you are as allergic to poison ivy as I am, you will not do this. Sorry, but bag it up and send it to the landfill.
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ID jit
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Re: Composting Poison Ivy Vine ???

Was afraid I was going to hear what I knew was true.... should I keep re-posting the question until I get the answer I want? So it is like morning glory... bag it, nuke it and ship it after a good bake in the sun.

I do "warm" composting at best now. Did the whole Berkley Method compost-in-3-weeks thing for a while. I don't have the time and energy for that. Do have a nice spread sheet the will tally out the C:N ratio nicely though. Only real issue is that the unit of measure on it is "Fork Full" (3 FF's of dried leave + 1 FF grass clippings +1 FF coffee grounds and kitchen scraps + 3 FF twigs-n-bark-n-stuff....)

Leaving the cut vine in a pile is a mistake I made once. It sprouted right up, ran back into the protected wets lands area, rooted up well and has been creeping back at me ever since.

Thanks for the replies.
I don't believe we can resist the things which make no sense - I believe.

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rainbowgardener
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Re: Composting Poison Ivy Vine ???

Wow, spreadsheets and all!

I don't do any tracking, measuring, etc. And yes my compost pile is "warm at best." I just add greens as they come along being sure to cover each layer of greens with an equal or more volume of browns.
Twitter account I manage for local Sierra Club: https://twitter.com/CherokeeGroupSC Facebook page I manage for them: https://www.facebook.com/groups/65310596576/ Come and find me and lots of great information, inspiration

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ID jit
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Re: Composting Poison Ivy Vine ???

rainbowgardener wrote:Wow, spreadsheets and all!
Easiest way to figure out how much of each component I had to add to the pile and keep the balance correct. Spread sheet took less than 20 minutes to make and less than 5 minutes to use.

(Spent 2 years figuring out how to make bread and how to manipulate ingredients and techniques to get just about and density, texture and crust I wanted. When I bake it now, it is all measured by handfuls and pinches and worked out by feel. Laugh with me, because I laugh at myself a lot. Day to day life is a never ending stream of minima maxima problems to me - it is all about the trade offs and what will work best with the resources which are available.)
I don't believe we can resist the things which make no sense - I believe.

ButterflyLady29
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Re: Composting Poison Ivy Vine ???

If you put it in black trash bags you don't need to hit it with round-up. It will die in the bags.

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ID jit
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Re: Composting Poison Ivy Vine ???

I believed that about morning glory once..... I try not to make the same mistake twice.

I know it works for some people and it makes sense, but ...better off safe that sorry with either of those two.
I don't believe we can resist the things which make no sense - I believe.

ButterflyLady29
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Re: Composting Poison Ivy Vine ???

Really? I put mine in heavy duty contractor grade bags (the ones they sell at Lowes) and tie it shut. Send it off to the landfill with regular trash on garbage day. I don't like to have poison ivy setting around for more than a few days so I try to pull/cut it the day before the trash pick up.

I can see where it might be a problem if you don't have trash pick up.

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