poison oak removal

Asked June 26, 2017, 10:52 AM EDT

I live in King city limits, have a creek that runs behind my home and the creek bank is covered in poision oak. Can't spray because of creek water, what can I do to remove poison oak without getting sick myself from this plant?

Stokes County North Carolina

1 Response

Thank you for your question about poison oak control. I am sorry that someone from your state's Extension service did not answer your question. I have attempted to find some N.C. Extension articles on poison oak, but the ones on poison ivy are far more available. So, I'll share an Extension article from Oregon on both of these subjects here. (Unfortunately, the publication referenced can be read, but it considered 'out of date,' probably because there are so many more chemicals available now than in 2006.)

The thing that is not out of date is goats, which are totally unaffected by ingestion of poison oak and poison ivy. (I googled "goats North Carolina" and came up with many goat rental services.) Poison oak and poison ivy management is best done manually when the soil is moist but the leaves are 'out,' so in late spring/early summer. But goats eat all year round. And, next spring, you can pull out the 'new' vines before the leaves are too big. Might be able to avoid chemicals entirely!

Hope this is helpful. Good luck!