Bonide Poison Ivy Killer is cheaper than Roundup, and knocks out these poisonous plants, and other broadleaf pests too.
I have to keep the poison ivy under control near our house as I am very sensitive to it. I can get it if the dog walks in the plants, and then I pet the dog. Twice a year I do a walking tour with my spray bottle of Bonide to knock out sprigs that might have come back or that I hadn’t seen previously. But I’ve pretty much eliminated the plant from about 20 acres.
If you want to pay more to see your problem plants wilt in just a few hours, go ahead. But if you are willing to be a bit more patient you can save some money. It will take a few days before you see the effects of this product beginning, but it does completely kill the plants.
The active ingredients in Bonide are 2-4 D, Mecoprop and Dicamba. They work on everything from thistles, to garlic mustard, heal-all, dandelion, and a long list which can be seen on the label. You can use it in your lawn if you are careful not to overspray on the grass too much. I am usually using it in the woods, along trails, or at the outer edges of my flower beds.
One feature that I really like about this product is that it contains a blue dye that allows you to see where you have actually sprayed. You can tell if you really have hit the leaves of the plant you want, and not the surrounding plants. See picture.
You need to pay attention to the weather and spray when the plants will not be rained on for 24 hours. (And don’t run the sprinkler for that amount of time if you are using it in your lawn).
So far I have killed small sprigs of poison ivy, and even large patches of poison ivy. The large patches have usually required several applications, several weeks apart because the root systems were extensive, and I didn’t manage to see all the related plants on one foray. I have also killed a large poison ivy vine that was growing up a tree just by spraying as many of the leaves as I could reach.
You do need to be careful when spraying in a breeze that the product doesn’t blow into your face. This is a poison. Incidentally, it smells terrible.
I have tried it on Russian Olive (a real pest of a tree) because it was the only herbicide I had in the house when I cut some of these bushy plants. It didn’t kill it, but I did slow its recovery for several years. Keep in mind that this product is not formulated for woody plants, but I was desperate!
The spray bottle has a cap you twist to either open or close the nozzle.
The effectiveness of Bonide does diminish over time. If you don’t use it all up in about two years you will need to dispose of it at a hazardous waste collection site.