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Poisonous Poodle- dog bush
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Nick Brown

Locale: Highland Park
Poisonous Poodle- dog bush on 04/02/2012 18:35:14 MDT Print View

For those in the LA area. The Angeles National Forest Station Fire has produced a beautiful but skin irritating friend worse than poison oak/ ivy by all accounts. Mind your way.

Bob Bankhead
(wandering_bob) - MLife

Locale: Oregon, USA
Re: Poisonous Poodle- dog bush on 04/02/2012 18:44:45 MDT Print View


poodle dog bush

Worse than poison oak, for which stretches of the PCT are legendary.

John Nausieda
(Meander) - MLife

Locale: PNW
Re: Poisonous Poodle- dog bush on 04/02/2012 18:47:27 MDT Print View

Thanks for the warning. This comes out of left field in terms of genus , species and remedy. Any known effective relief agents? Technu? Autoimmune response?Range is usually limited by ...? Suggestion it moves in after fire Craig?

Edited by Meander on 04/02/2012 18:50:50 MDT.

Craig W.
(xnomanx) - F - M
Poisonous Poodle- dog bush on 04/02/2012 18:48:27 MDT Print View

Adan and I have had our share of run-ins with this crap. Looks like something out of a Dr. Seuss book to me. I had some redness and burning/itching on my shins and legs, so did he. On a few runs through burn areas there was some unavoidable bushwhacking through it.

When we see it, it's usually without flowers:


First time I saw it from a distance, I thought we scored someone's pot farm.

I had no idea it was poisonous until fairly recently; before the fires, you never had to deal with it too much.

Edited by xnomanx on 04/02/2012 18:51:24 MDT.

John Nausieda
(Meander) - MLife

Locale: PNW
Re: Poisonous Poodle- dog bush on 04/02/2012 18:57:04 MDT Print View

Does anyone understand whether the juvenile foliage vs. the adult is dangerous? Mechanism of the irritation? The flowers are novel, vaguely like Digitalis, but the woody stems are unlike anything else with that flower that I've ever seen-pro's please chime in. Effective remedies? External? Internal?

Nico .
(NickB) - MLife

Locale: Los Padres National Forest
Poodle Dog Bush on 04/02/2012 23:32:36 MDT Print View

Ugh, this stuff is bad news.

It's caught a lot of people off guard in the last few years around the Los Padres NF as it has followed in the aftermath of all of our wildfires and at least initially, people didn't know what it was. Apparently it's endemic to Southern CA and the seeds can live dormant in the ground for years until given the opportunity to re-sprout. Seems to come up after major disturbances... like wildfires.

I've mostly noticed it at moderate elevations, say 3,000' to about 5,000'. I haven't seen much of it below or above that range locally.

I don't have any first-hand knowledge/experience with the skin irritation caused by it, but it's my understanding that the hairs on the leaves that give people the itchies. Treatment is similar to PO: calamine lotion and/or cortisone-based products.

Adan Lopez
(Lopez) - F

Locale: San Gabriel Valley
Poodle dog on 04/03/2012 08:42:10 MDT Print View

Cute name ain't it? Makes it sound cuddly.

I've had some experience with this now as Craig mentioned. My rash was quite a bit worse than Craig's, but I react to oak a lot worse too, so maybe this hints at it's similarity to oak? Poodle dog rash is dryer than oak in my experience, not getting as wet and oozy. Also, with oak I always notice the itching starting in other more tender places first, typically wherever my hands have been. With Poodle dog, the rash only seemed to start where the plant came in contact with my skin. So with oak i always do a full body Technu scrub and shower, but with this stuff i think its not necessary. Nasty itchy stuff but it was much easier to manage than oak I think. Technu worked for me, the rash on my lower legs stopped itching within a few days of treatment and then two weeks later the rash cleared completely. I ain't scared of this stuff now that I know Technu works, bring it on!

Jacob D
(JacobD) - F

Locale: North Bay
Re: Poodle dog on 04/03/2012 09:17:08 MDT Print View

I first read about this stuff in this article... sounds like nasty stuff to be sure.

"body wide, systematic itching" ...hmmm wonderful.

Edited by JacobD on 04/03/2012 09:17:53 MDT.

Piper S.
(sbhikes) - F

Locale: Santa Barbara (Name: Diane)
Re: Re: Poisonous Poodle- dog bush on 04/03/2012 10:52:26 MDT Print View

Wow Bob, that looks exactly like the picture I took on the PCT.

It was so pretty. I kept walking right up to it to see if it smelled good and to take pictures. I really thought it might be some kind of fancy Yerba Santa. I'm really shocked I never brushed against it. I heard some hikers last year got dermatitis really bad from it. I can't remember for sure, but I think one was even hospitalized briefly.

Nico .
(NickB) - MLife

Locale: Los Padres National Forest
@ Piper on 04/03/2012 10:58:47 MDT Print View

I thought the same thing the first time I saw it! It looks like a prehistoric yerba santa.

There's TONS of it along the Portrero Seco Rd heading out towards the Three Sisters and Monte Arido. It lines the fire road in places on both sides. Saw some recently in the Sespe too... either out by Mutau Flat or along Grade Valley Rd, can't remember where exactly it was and I don't think I took a photo of it, but it's easy to spot... it looks so out of place.