One of the reasons poison ivy is so difficult to kill that you have to eliminate the entire plant, down to the root. It is not always simple.
Since poison ivy can cause serious reactions like a red, itchy rash, it is not really a good idea to go in there and remove the roots. That’s why the most effective poison ivy killer is the way to go.
Let’s take a look at some methods to kill this disease and some of the best available items to get rid of it for good.
The 10 Best Poison Ivy Killers on the Market
When it comes to killing poison ivy there are a lot of great choices. Several come ready to use while others are condensed and must be diluted before application with water. Here are a few of the most effective, best-rated options available.
1. RoundUp 5203910 Ready-to-Use Poison Ivy Plus
This Roundup product, a well-known brand when it comes to killing weeds and other plant pests, is our first pick. It is specially formulated to work on the waxy leaves, which are so difficult to penetrate with two powerful ingredients. Then, it makes its way to the root and kills the entire plant.
This is a convenient formula and is easy to use. It comes pre-mixed with an extension wand that allows for precise application without leaning over, awkward reaching, or exhaustion by hand. One bottle treats a maximum of 400 square feet.
All you need to do is spray the leaves on the poison ivy plant until they are soaked to the full. However, this stuff is really powerful, so be sure to protect against exposure to any other plants. This formula will be rainproof in about 30 minutes and will give you results in around 24 hours.
Spray when the wind is not blowing to avoid getting it on healthy plants and wear needed protective gear for the best results. This product comes with a money-back guarantee. If it doesn’t work or for some reason you ‘re not happy, Roundup will refund your money.
2. Bonide (BND506) – Poison Oak and Ivy Killer
Next up is this Bonide spray that kills not only poison ivy but other hard-to-manage broadleaf plants such as dandelion, thistle, and stinging nettle. This formula uses Trimec, a herbicide that quickly and effectively destroys plant pests from the leaves to the roots.
Of this one, something very cool is that it’s so easy to use. It comes in a spray bottle, ready-to-use. The adjustable nozzle gives you power over the application plus it goes on red so that you can see clearly where you have sprayed and where you have not. Use the precision “spray” setting or the “mist” setting for wider coverage.
This spray is so effective that it was reported by some people to have permanently killed poison ivy as it did not return in the next year. This will not damage your lawn or other plants if used properly. However, use a bit of caution, since the spray bottle tends to leak.
3. Ortho MAX Poison Ivy & Tough Brush Killer Concentrate
If you have to kill a lot of really tough poison ivy, poison oak, wild blackberries, or kudzu, take a look at this Ortho MAX spray. It’s formulated to take care of over 60 different types of weeds and brush, and can even tackle woody plants, vines, and stumps.
This is a concentrated formula that should be applied to your garden hose using a tank sprayer or by adding a hose-end spray. It’s a great way to cover large growth areas and it’s so effective, keeping plants from coming back for years.
Although after a few hours this spray is rainproof, it’s best to wait until the weather is clear for a day or two to really let the poison ivy killer penetrate the leaves and get to work on the plant. During each application, you should wear gloves and other protective gear too.
4. Roundup Concentrate Poison Ivy Plus Tough Brush Killer
This Roundup concentrate is another effective option that is meant to be used in a sprayer. It combines two brush-killing ingredients and is highly effective against poison ivy, poison oak, poison sumac, and other invasive plants;
This formula works by penetrating these hard-to-kill plants’ waxy leaves and working their way down into the root. It is concentrated which makes it suitable for broad areas coverage. In reality, one bottle treats up to 1,500 square feet of water.
Read the label then add the correct amount of water to assess the concentration. For the application, you’ll need to use a sprayer and Roundup has several different sizes available.
Apply to poison ivy which grows aggressively when there is no wind to prevent contamination of healthy plants. This product is rainproof in just 30 minutes, after application. Visible effects need to be seen within 24 hours of application.
5. Southern Ag 100520254 Crossbow Specialty Herbicide
This herbicide from Southern Ag is another product that effectively kills poison ivy and many, many other invasive broad-leaf plants. This one-gallon concentrates bottle can produce up to 96 gallons of spray solution.
One of the best things about this ivy poison killer is that it covers a lot of territories. This bottle will cover between 1⁄2 and 3⁄4 hectare of ground, depending on how powerful you mix it. This is a great choice if you are looking for something to spray along your fences or the roadside, or if you need to cover along the edges of large wooded areas.
A significant thing to keep in mind is that you should always use the appropriate protective equipment for this product (and all sprays, actually). During the application wear gloves, long sleeves, and long pants and find a mask and protective goggles. This stuff is strong!
6. Southern Ag Surfactant for Herbicides Non-Ionic
This next Southern Ag commodity is not, per se, a herbicide. Rather it’s a surfactant that helps to increase any herbicide’s coverage and penetration. If you have a product you like, and you want to increase its efficiency, try this product.
How’s it working out? This decreases the water stress in any herbicide that allows for uniform coverage and lets this penetrate the leaves and more efficiently get into the inside of the plant.
Before applying, simply add a teaspoon or so to your herbicide. The label tells you how much to add to some of the most common herbicide forms. This is a perfect way to make your poison ivy killer more successful and when you have a lot of ground to protect it comes in especially handy.
7. BioAdvanced 704655A Brush Killer Plus
BioAdvanced’s brush killer works on poison ivy as well as poison oak, blackberry, kudzu and more than 70 other forms of hard-to-kill weeds and trees. That concentrated formula is so powerful that it can even kill stumps.
Bio-advanced Brush Killer gets down to the roots, penetrating the waxy leaves down to the roots to destroy the whole plant. This ready-to-use formula comes in for specific applications in a bottle with a spray wand attachment.
Use cardboard to protect other plants for best results, and apply on a day when there is little to no wind. Although this formula is rainfast after a few hours, it is still best to save the application for a day when the peak efficiency forecast does not indicate any rain.
For stumps, the application is slightly different. Use a dedicated paintbrush to cover the stump with undiluted concentrates for quick and focused control. Be sure to properly dispose of the brush by folding it around and tossing it into the garbage.
8. Ragan And Massey 75260 32oz Brushtox Brush Killer Concentrate
If you really have stubborn ivy poison and want something really strong, take a look at Brushtox’s brush killer. Besides poison ivy, this mixture is also very successful against woody plants such as oaks, locust, and sweetgum as well as harsh wide leaf plant pests such as dog fennel.
For large areas of land, this concentrated formula is a great choice. On fencerows, ditch banks, and grass pastures, it covers up to one acre and is efficient. Be warned, that’s a little different from other brush killers. It’s oily and pretty toxic.
That said, when submitting, beware. Wear protective equipment is recommended. Timing is also important. Be sure to apply for the most effective application on a dry day and do some research on optimal temperatures.
9. Voluntary Purchasing Group Hi-Yield 11484 Brush Killer Stump Killer
Check out this Cooperative Buying Community brush killer to eradicate poison ivy in around your home or cabin, along a fence, or in any other non-crop areas. It not only works on poison ivy but it is also powerful enough to deal with woody plants, vines, and even stumps.
Because this formula is so powerful, it is best to apply it to leaves with a sprayer so that you have more control over the application. Be careful not to get any of these on your healthy plants. It is recommended that a piece of cardboard be used to protect them while spraying.
This formula takes some time to work but is ultimately very effective, especially when applied at full concentration on stumps.
10. Spectracide Weed & Grass Killer Concentrate
One of the best things about this Spectracide weed killer is that it works easily, without causing long-term harm. In fact, within a few days, you can replant new flowers, shrubs, and trees or grass and sod in about a week’s time. Mix the concentrates and apply them to cover the waxy poison ivy leaves completely with a sprayer.
This is a perfect choice for large area coverage. In just 30 minutes it is rainproof and in just three hours you will see clear effects. Apply in temperatures greater than 60 degrees F for best results and pick a day when it will not rain and the wind will be calm. Protect other cardboard plans so as to avoid damage.
Another great thing about this product is the money-back guarantee that comes with it. Details on the mark can be accessed but they promise performance or your money back. This is perfect for patios, driveways, and hiking trails.
What is the Best Poison Ivy Killer?
Though all of these items are fantastic, we think the best option is Roundup 5203980 Poison Ivy + Tough Brush Killer. This is a well-known brand with a great reputation, using two ingredients down to the root to kill poison ivy.
Another nice thing about it is that it comes ready to spray so that you don’t have to think about mixing it. One bottle handles around 400 square feet, making it ideal to spray around your backyard. Not only that but in around 24 hours you get results.
Best of all, a money-back guarantee comes with this product so there’s almost nothing to lose.
When is the Best Time to Kill Poison Ivy?
Poison ivy tends to begin to grow around May, depending on the climate in which you live. While you may think it is best to apply the chemical weed killer to the plant before it becomes too big, that is not the best approach.
Waiting until July or August when the plant has matured and the leaves are fully formed is generally safer. Why? For what? Since those chemicals are added directly to the leaves and when the plant is very young, they are not as successful.
Waiting until mid to late summer, the leaves are in the mode of energy production, and are very active. This is the best time to apply the weed killer as it makes it’s way easily into the plant and down to the roots.
Usually, one application is enough but may need two. While waiting until later in the summer to remove the plant may seem inconvenient, keep in mind that this is typically a long-term solution. The plants won’t return the following year with the correct care.
As for when to apply the killer poison ivy, it is best to wait for a dry day. Although most of these items are rainproof after 30 minutes to a couple of hours, it is best to allow the chemicals to stay on the leaves for as long as possible, so that the maximum amount of poison reaches the plant.
How to Use Poison Ivy Killer?
Each brand of poison ivy killer is a bit different but when using chemical plant killers there are some common procedures to follow.
Any of these items come ready to use so you don’t have to do anything before applying. For those arriving in concentrated form, follow the package’s directions. To get the right strength you will need to add a specific amount of water to each.
Wand sprayers are best when application time comes. Any of these items come in pure bottles of water. Although these are truly handy, they don’t give you as much power as a wand.
Sprinkle the poison on the poison ivy plant leaves, and saturate as much as possible. Bear in mind that it’s hard to kill poison ivy so these chemicals are very potent. Evite any contact with plants close by. To shield them from any spray using a large piece of cardboard.
As we said, these poisons are typically pretty quick rainproof, some formulations say in as little as 30 minutes that they are waterproof. That said, though, waiting for a break in the forecast where there will be no rain for a few days is still a good idea. The longer the leaves hold the chemicals, the better.
Wait until no wind applies. The chemicals can easily be carried onto other plants by any gusts. Wear protective equipment including long sleeves, long pants, and gloves; Some people too choose to wear a mask for breathing. Follow all instructions on the label for protection.
You have choices when it comes to getting rid of the poison ivy. Alas, going organic isn’t the best way to get there. The only way to end a poison ivy plant is to kill the root for good. Getting down on your hands and knees to yank the plant off the ground brings a lot of hazards.
No matter how careful you are, there is always a chance that when you try to uproot the plant you’ll end up breaking out in a rash. And if you wear long sleeves, long pants and gloves, your clothes are polluted with plant oils. Some contact with your skin can be hard to avoid.
The way to go is to hire a chemical plant killer. The strongest poison ivy killer moves down the leaves to the plant’s heart. If the first attempt doesn’t succeed, a second application normally suffices to prevent the plant from ever returning.
Although the specification for all these items is pretty much the same, each is slightly different. Be sure to obey all the bottle-side directions to ensure you are using the drug safely to get the best results.
Although all these items are effective at getting the job done, Roundup 5203980 Poison Ivy + Tough Brush Killer is recommended. It is a simple, ready-to-use formula for easy and precise application that comes with a wand sprayer. Not to mention, a money-back guarantee covers that.
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