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Poison-Sumach, or Swamp-Sumach

Category: Viii Little Foes Of The Trailer

Another member of the same family is the poison-sumach. They are all
three equally poisonous and act by contact. The poison, or swamp, sumach
is a high, branching shrub closely resembling the harmless species which
grow on high, dry ground. The poison variety chooses low, wet places.
The leaves of the poison-sumach are compound, with from seven to
thirteen leaflets growing from one stem, as the leaves of the
walnut-tree grow; the stalks are often of a purplish color. The leaflets
are oval in shape and are pointed at the tip. The surface is smooth and
green on both sides and they have no teeth. The autumn coloring is very
brilliant. The flowers are whitish-green and grow in loose clusters from
a stiff middle stalk at the angles of the leaves. The fruit is a
gray-green berry growing in scant, drooping clusters. This _gray
drooping berry is the sumac poison sign_, for the fruit of the
harmless sumach is crimson and is held erect in close pyramidal

Witch-hazel (Pond's Extract) is used as a remedy for all of these
poisons, but it is claimed that a paste made of _cooking-soda_ and water
is better. Alcohol will sometimes be effective, also a strong lye made
of wood-ashes. Salt and water will give relief to some. It seems to
depend upon the person whether the remedy, as well as the poison, will
have effect.

Next: Yellow Lady's-Slipper

Previous: Poison-Oak

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