The climate emergency is creating a lot of awful results but I really hate one of its lesser products: More and stronger poison ivy. I am pretty sensitive to the <expletive deleted> stuff.
It’s been known for a while that more CO2 in the atmosphere makes the plant grow faster, and a study at Harvard Research Forest in Massachusetts last year showed that the <unsuitable-for-publication adjective> plant also likes warm soils – and soils are getting warmer as temperature rises. Many plants’ growth rate is boosted by warming soils but <NSFW terminology> poison ivy is boosted more than most, meaning it will further outgrow the competition.
The Union-Leader has a localizer story about it today (you’ll need a subscription to read it) adding to our annoyance:
Experts say the dreaded three-leafed plant — source of food for wildlife and misery for people — has flourished, thanks to a wet summer.
“The rain is making it very happy,” said Helaine Hughes of Greenfield, owner of the Poison Ivy Removal Company.
I like that the reporter, Jason Schreiber, does take time to point out that it’s a good food source in the wild.