On Wed, 09 Jan 2013 03:32:55 -0600, firstname.lastname@example.org wrote:
I buy water softener salt at Lowe's, 40 pounds/$4... rock salt costs
even less. The salt does no permanent damage and in fact the critters
use it for a salt lick. After about a year the salt dilutes from
precipitation as though you never placed it there.
On Tue, 08 Jan 2013 12:42:29 -0600, homeowner wrote:
I have read that rock salt works, so that is an option which might be
less harmful to the environment than diesel fuel.
I've never used rock salt before, so I'd have to research how to use it
On Tue, 08 Jan 2013 12:42:29 -0600, homeowner wrote:
I did do the research! :)
This scientific site says it lasts 100 years!
Here's the verbatim quote from that San Francisco State web site:
"What is amazing is specimens 100 years old have been known
to cause dermatitis in humans, because urushiol is a relatively
stable compound, and can remain potent for years in the absence
of oxidation (Armstrong & Epstein 1995)."
I would think that, outdoors, exposed to the elements, the urushiol
would only be allergenic to humans for something on the order of
perhaps only 5 or 10 years, but, the point is that the oil from
Toxicodendron diversilobum will last far longer than we'd like it to.
The verbatim statement from that web site below leads me to
conjure the thought that this single plant on my property can
infect every single person on earth, since it was literally
dripping drops of sap within a few minutes of cutting the plant!
"Urushiol is so incredibly toxic that it would take only one
ounce of it to affect everyone on the earth with a rash
There are other opinions. One source suggested that 15% are unaffected;
another said thirty.
I reacted severely from what was in the air when I got close to it when
we first moved to Oregon. But a few years later, I could pick it
without gloves and have little or no reaction. Other people who drank
goat's milk reported similar experiences. We believe the milk either
contains an antidote, or it contains traces of urushiol so small your
body has a chance to develop a defense.
But it might be something else entirely. I do think I have a strong
immune system, as I never react to a smallpox vaccine. Since I had no
scar, the Navy accused me of lying and vaccinated me again. And again,
even though the second one (the first Navy one) was documented in my
Unfortunately, my immune system is now attacking my thyroid glands.
On Tue, 08 Jan 2013 23:58:18 -0500, Wes Groleau wrote:
We're talking different things, so let's clarify. :)
1. Nobody is immune to type IV CMI
2. But not everybody gets the rash under normal circumstances
3. Yet, almost everyone will get the rash if they get exposed to enough
It gets complicated to explain in a USENET post, but let's briefly take
these in turn - but this isn't the place for detailed discussions.
I. Nobody is immune.
Delayed contact dermititis is a type IV CMI (cell mediated immune
response), which nobody is immune to forever. Get exposed frequently
enough, and you WILL get it. It's the way your body works.
II. Not every gets the rash all the time
This is highly dependent on dosage! Remember the oil is NOT anywhere on
the outside of the plant! The oil is protectively ensconced INSIDE the
cells. Of course, chain sawing the plant in half tends to allow the oils
to leak out ... like this video I just took today of just that:
III. Give any human enough pure urushiol, and they ALL will get the rash!
(See #I and #II above.)
Anyway, while we're quoting figures, Wikipedia says the following on
"Approximately 80% to 90% of adults will get a rash if they are exposed
to 50 micrograms of purified urushiol. Some people are so sensitive, it
only takes a trace of urushiol (two micrograms or less than one ten-
millionth of an ounce) on the skin to initiate an allergic reaction
(Epstein et al., 1974)."
Now, if you're exposed to less urushiol, all bets are off - but - given
this picture below, I would safely say anyone exposed to this much
potential urushiol had better take some safety precautions (as I do). :)
On Tue, 08 Jan 2013 23:58:18 -0500, Wes Groleau wrote:
That is an interesting story - but I would caution anyone from actually
touching the stuff because of the classic YMMV difference in every
The funny thing about invisible toxins is that we really don't know
exactly where the stuff is, and where it isn't.
For example, look at my red sweatshirt & TIG welding gloves today:
Notice I had no idea exactly WHERE the urushiol was, on Sunday, when I
last wore them, but today, two days later, the oil on the gloves was
sufficiently oxidized black to see it and the shirt oils were oxidized in
the washing machine.
The point is - you never know if you've been truly exposed or not, as
it's a statistical thing. So, a LOT of people conclude they were exposed
and didn't get the rash - when - in reality - they just weren't exposed
(or not exposed to enough to make black marks all over their clothes).
When I was in graduate school, I worked part time in a lab, and you'd be
amazed at the strangest places we found P32 with the geiger counter. You
can't see it - and when you find out where it got - you sit there and
ponder how the hell did it get there.
Now, maybe the goats milk matters - because the immune system DOES work
the way you said it does (i.e., when exposed at the right time in the
immune system development, the immune system learns what is body and what
is foreign) - so I am NOT saying you're wrong ... I'm just cautioning
anyone from actually touching the stuff with bare hands on purpose!
Urushiol is no different. You didn't get it from "the air". You touched
something that had a pinprick drop of oil on it. What you touched could
have been 'anything' (remember, the oil is known to remain infectious for
100 years ... in a laboratory drawer anyway).
The other thing to remember is that the oil is NOT on the outside of the
plant. Not outside the leaves, stem, berries, or root. But it's inside
all of them, so, you (and I) can pick it up (gingerly) and nothing bad
But, when you do this ... now you've gotten that damn plant mad! :)
TRUE--but many accidental exposures had appeared to confirm the goat's
milk hypothesis. So, being young and foolish, I assumed I was immune
and abandoned precautions. And got away with it.
When it was my son's turn to be young and foolish, he formed the
hypothesis that he could immunize himself by limited contact.
If you know where to look, you can still make out the scars.
> The other thing to remember is that the oil is NOT on the outside
> of the plant. Not outside the leaves, stem, berries, or root. But
> it's inside all of them, so, you (and I) can pick it up (gingerly)
> and nothing bad will happen.
Ah, I would question that as well. Before my resistance developed, the
slightest contact had severe effects.
By the way, some of that resistance has gone away over time.
Oh yes. Very very very sure!
I have cut human-sized tunnels through poison oak, where the urushiol
literally drips like a faucet overhead from the wrist-sized hangers.
The leaves-of-three are distinctive, and are not wild raspberries (whose
leaves look similar but are furry & spiny). The white berries are also
distinctive, as are the tendrils all over the place.
Of course, the fact that the rash is starting to show up at my wrists,
ankles and neck from my weekend work is yet another clue - but - yes,
there is absolutely no doubt what it is.
The problem isn't identifying it - the problem is getting rid of it
without actually getting it!
I remember reading that Danny did mark the bins.
And the trash pickup guys refused the bins.
Just imagine the pickup guys coming down with
wicked poison oak, and not knowing why.
Can we donate that stuff to the military, and they
can spray it on the enemy a couple days before
ground invasions? Just think if we sprayed Mogadishu
before the "Blackhawk Down" invasion that went
so badly wrong. All those skinnies home, itching
instead of shooting at the Rangers.
Christopher A. Young
Learn more about Jesus
Did you mark the bins so the disposal guys will be aware of the danger?
On Tue, 08 Jan 2013 14:00:50 -0800, DerbyDad03 wrote:
Actually, I had put a sign in Spanish & English on the green recycling
bins, but, then I called the waste management company to warn them, and
they told me they won't pick them up because they are a toxic waste
So, I ended up wistfully pulling all the mutilated Pacific Poison Oak
vines back OUT of the bins (which probably exposed me to more than
chainsawing them did!) ... and I carried the bleeding-black vines deeper
into the chaparral for safety sake, cursing the day I ever got the bright
idea of putting them into the recycling bins in the first place!
Lesson learned, the hard way!
Note: In the picture above, the black ring is a ring of oxidized urushiol,
which weeped clear, but then oxidized to a black laquer since Sunday.
On Wed, 9 Jan 2013 06:15:46 +0000 (UTC), "Danny D."
There are similar cutters that mount on small tractors, that's how
roadway shoulders are cleared of heavy brush... they're called "flail
mowers". From your pictures it appears one could easily clear your
property down to stumps with a small tractor with a cab (for
protection) and a brush hog... my set up can clear your property an
acre an hour. Once cut treat the stubs with defolient, I'd use a hand
On Wed, 09 Jan 2013 11:29:22 -0500, Brooklyn1 wrote:
Understood. They clear the roads out here all the time with a five foot
wide cutter than arcs high and can get behind the guardrails (banging
them up in the process).
That WOULD work for the part that I just cleared, but not for the part
deep down in the ravine 100 feet below (which is inaccessible to tractors
Probably not in my budget though. :(
You don't need to buy, you can rent. But I were you I'd contract with
a local land clearing company... since it appears that you really need
to get the job done it pays to have the pros do it... they have the
equipment and the know how. Often attempting such jobs oneself the
cheap turns out expensive. You might be pleasantly surprised to find
out having the pros do it doesn't cost as much as you may think. Get
some estimates, that's also a great way to learn some good ways to
approach your problem from folks who actually know. I know that it
can be very tough on certain people's egos but there are some jobs one
shouldn't do themselves, from what I can see I think this is such a
job. Were it my property I'd have the company that removes trees for
me do that job, they'd arrive with a small crew (maybe four men), in
no time all that heavy brush would go into their heavy shredder, it
would get trucked to a dump site. Then they'd come in and till and
power rake your entire field. In practically no time all your
problems would be over and you'd have nice fresh land to do with as
you will. I don't remember seeing where you mention how much land is
involved (acres?), I'm guestimating from your pictures that job will
cost you about $1,000, well worth it. Jobs like yours are almost all
labor, there are no materials involved like when putting in a gravel
roadway... only material for your job is like $100 diesel.
Either of these companys can do your job, I've used both several times
each, both are very reliable and honest. If all you want is to remove
the brush contact LB, if you want to remove the brush and totally
improve the topography contact Maggio:
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