How to Kill Poison Ivy & Underbrush


Poison ivy presents a problem for gardeners in many areas of the country. While the toxins from poison ivy may not have any effect the first few times you come in contact with it, over time the symptoms from the toxins become more severe. The best method of killing poison ivy and underbrush is with chemical herbicides.

Step 1

Mix the chemical herbicide with water as directed by the manufacturer. Effective herbicides for killing poison ivy include glyphosate, amitrole, 2,4-D and triclopyr. There also are mixes available at garden stores that combine two or more of these chemicals.

Step 2

Pour the mixture into a 20-gallon spray container and firmly screw the lid into place. Wash your hands to remove any chemical residue.

Step 3

Pressurize the container by pumping air into it until the pressure gauge reads full pressure.

Step 4

Put on protective clothing including gloves, eye protection, mask, thick pants and a long-sleeved shirt.

Step 5

Spray the poison ivy and underbrush area heavily with the herbicide.

Step 6

Remove clothes by carefully turning them inside out and wash them immediately in hot water.

Step 7

Take a shower and wash yourself thoroughly to remove any herbicide residue.

Things You'll Need

  • Chemical herbicide
  • 20-gallon pressure spray container
  • Gloves
  • Eye protection
  • Mask
  • Thick pants
  • Long-sleeved shirt


  • Michigan State University Extension: Poison Ivy Control Douglas O. Lantagne Department of Forestry
  • University of Oklahoma: Poison Ivy
Keywords: poison ivy, controlling ivy, killing underbrush

About this Author

Ann White is a freelance journalist with prior experience as a Corporate and Business Attorney and Family Law Mediator. She has written for multiple university newspapers and has published over 300 articles for publishers such as EHow and Garden Guides. White earned her Juris Doctor from Thomas Jefferson School of Law and a Bachelor of Arts in English literature.