Thursday, May 20, 2010

What tree (wild) has jagged leaves grouped in threes?

I have a flower bed in front of my house and this tree has grown just out of no where, almost from underneath the house. It looks kind of tropical, but the leaves look like they might be poisonous. Could it possibly be poison oak or something like that? The leaves are grouped in 3's and they are jagged.

What tree (wild) has jagged leaves grouped in threes?
Check the pics of Box Elder at the link. Box Elder usually has leaves divided into 5 parts but juveniles might only have them in 3s.
Reply:Souds like a box elder tree but can't be sure without more info.
Reply:well, first you want to be sure that it's a tree. Poison Ivy, especially when young, can throw up woody shoots a foot or so high. Other possibilities can include a compound-leaved maple relative called Box-Elder, or Blackberry or Raspberry varieties (but they'll have thorns on the stem, of course). If it's growing like a tree, then I'd be inclined to go with Box-Elder (although where you live might have something to say about that). Look for green shoots and branches. If you're not sure whether it's poison ivy, pick off a leaf cluster using a plastic bag or such and take it to an agricultural agent or a landscaper or such to look at. Most people who spend a lot of time in the outdoors (including Boy Scouts, hunters and field biologists) know how to tell poison ivy.

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