how to identify and eliminate poisonous sumac and purple

Asked June 21, 2017, 3:10 PM EDT

how to tell if sumac in yard is poisonous and if it is, how to get rid of it, and how to identify and eliminate purple nightshade in yard.

Ramsey County Minnesota herbicides poison sumac bittersweet nightshade climbing nightshade horticulture

1 Response

Thank you for the question. The best way to control poison sumac is with an herbicide that is a full spectrum herbicide containing glyphosphate, and or tryciclopyr and/or a combination of these two chemicals. Read the package label completely before using. You will have to be persistent and it may take a few years to rid yourself of it. Here is a good publication on how to identify this plant: http://www.poison-ivy.org/poison-sumac and another one that discusses control and the important things to do and not to do in order to protect yourself while dealing with it: http://www.aces.edu/pubs/docs/A/ANR-1460/ANR-1460.pdf.
Be aware that poison sumac is quite rare in Minnesota.

Here is our publication on and elimination of bitter nightshade, a common climbing nightshade with small purple climbing flowers: https://www.extension.umn.edu/garden/yard-garden/weeds/bitter-nightshade/ This plant is mildly poisonous, especially the green berries and is especially toxic to small children due to their low body weight.

Thank you for contacting Extension.