How to Grow English Ivy & Care Guide

Ivy is an excellent choice for a sunny window sill. It has the potential to become long and lush, adding a touch of nature to any room.

If you know what makes an ivy plant happy, growing ivy indoors is a cinch. Let’s take a closer look at ivy and how to properly care for it.

About Ivy Houseplants

There are many distinct kinds of ivy houseplants. Among them:

  • English ivy (Hedera helix)
  • Irish ivy (Hedera hibernica)
  • Japanese ivy (Hedera rhombea)
  • Algerian ivy (Hedera canariensis)
  • Persian ivy (Hedera colchica)
  • Nepal ivy (Hedera nepalensis)
  • Russian ivy (Hedera pastuchovii)

The most popular variety of ivy cultivated at home is English ivy, although there are other varieties that can be found if you seek hard enough.

Ivy plants exist in a variety of cultivars for each of the numerous types of ivy.

You can choose from a wide variety of ivies for your house according to your desire for color (green or variegated with white, yellow, grey, and black), leaf shape, and growing habits.

Growing Ivy Indoors

It’s not difficult to grow ivy indoors as long as you give it what it requires. In the management of an indoor ivy plant, light is the most critical factor.

All real ivies require a lot of light. If you want to grow variegated plants, you can grow them in medium light, but keep in mind that their variegation can fade if they are exposed to less light.

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Indoor ivy plants will become leggy and unhealthy if they don’t get enough sunlight. They’ll be more vulnerable to pests, too.

Indoor Ivy Plant Care

Be sure to examine the soil before watering your ivy. Ivies enjoy slightly dry soil, so wait until the soil is dry to the touch on top before watering again.

Make sure that your ivy has good drainage, as the plant does not appreciate standing water or soil that is too wet to thrive.

It is important to fertilize ivy plants on a regular basis as part of their care.

During the spring, summer, and fall, apply a water-soluble, nitrogen-rich fertilizer to your ivy about once a month.

Winter is a bad season to fertilize since the ivy is dormant and the fertilizer could do more harm than good.

Periodic cleaning of ivy houseplant leaves is beneficial in removing dust and bugs.

Place your ivy plant in the shower and let the water flow over it for a few minutes to get it clean.

The spray may need to be brought closer to the plant if the insect infestation is severe enough to necessitate this step.

Taking good care of ivy plants is both simple and enjoyable.

You’ll have a lot of fun growing ivy indoors because of the variety of ivy plants you can choose from.


Ground cover plants should be trimmed in the spring with clean, sharp cutting shears to prevent bacterial leaf spots.

Also in spring, nip off the developing tips of any ivy to form it into a shrub. Every few years, good rigorous pruning is beneficial to the plant’s health.

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If you want to get rid of English ivy that has already taken hold of one of your trees, proceed with caution.

Don’t just rip a vine off the tree’s bark; this could cause damage.

It’s better to cut each vine where it emerges from ground level at the tree’s base, rather than at the top.

As soon as the vine is cut off from the ground (and hence from a water source), it dies and withers in the bark of the tree.

Using this method to remove the plant organically requires patience, but it is the best option.

Repeated cutting of new growth is necessary until the plant loses all of its vigors. New shoots will no longer emerge in the spring after this point.

Propagating English Ivy

Pruning your ivy will yield trimmings or stem cuttings that can be used to propagate new plants.

  • Ideally, the stems should be 4 to 5 inches long and in good health. To encourage new root growth, soak the cut ends in water for a few days.
  • Make your way to a pot or the ground and plant your stems! Rooted stems can be cut and dug up to relocate plants to a new spot in the garden, or they can be transplanted into a new pot.

Potting and Repotting English Ivy

These plants can also be grown in hanging baskets and let spill over the sides.

In fact, given their invasive nature, this is an excellent method for cultivating vines for aesthetic purposes without having to worry about their uncontrolled expansion.

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When it comes to small ivy plants, you can repot them once a year, while larger ivy plants should be repotted every two years.

In order to keep your plants healthy, you should always repot them in fresh potting soil.

Soil replacement in the same container does wonders for plants that have lost their vigor.

Common Pests & Plant Diseases

Insecticides, such as neem oil or insecticidal soap, can be used to get rid of pests like aphids, spider mites, mealybugs, and more.

Spraying the foliage with a solution of dish detergent and water can help control aphids.

Ivy is susceptible to bacterial leaf spots and root rot, both of which are caused by fungi.

Leaf spot is characterized by dark brown or black spots on the plant’s leaves.

Unfortunately, the only solution is to eliminate the plants that are infected.

Spray the remaining plants with a 10-to-1 solution of water and vinegar to help keep them safe.

Warm, moist weather is often the cause of root rot, which can be devastating to plants.

Once again, the best solution is to get rid of the offending item.

A fungicide can be used to protect any remaining plants that are unaffected.

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