There’s a monster in the woods this time of year. It’s big, green and hairy – and it’s waiting patiently for you: Poison Ivy.

VIDEO: How to spot poison ivy

PHOTOS: Scenes from Shenk’s Ferry Wildflower Preserve 

LEARN MORE: Things you never knew about Pa.’s native plants

Tim Draude of the Muhlenberg Botanical Society is one of those rare individuals who is not allergic to poison ivy. He also has some tips on how to spot the plant before you come in contact with it.

Tips on how to spot poison ivy:

– Look for 3 shiny leaves

– Poison ivy has tiny greenish-white flowers

– Later in the season, white berries sprout from the plant

Although it’s a vine, the plant doesn’t necessarily climb trees. You can get poison ivy from the leaves, stems, or roots. Also, you don’t have to come in direct contact with the plant to get poison ivy. Pets that run through a patch of poison ivy can also bring it into your home.

Photos: Scenes from Shenk’s Ferry Wildflower Preserve

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Meg Frankowski/WGAL

Shenk’s Ferry Wildflower Preserve, located along the Susquehanna River, is one of the region’s premier locations to observe native Pennsylvania plant life.



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Wild Moments: How to spot poison ivy