English Ivy Care

Family: Araliaceae
Common Name: Common Ivy, English Ivy, European Ivy, Ivy
Botanical name: Hedera helix

English Ivy is a definite mood setter and while this plant grows rather assertively outdoors it requires a bit more care when grown as an indoor plant. Hedra helix is still an easy houseplant to grow, but you may need to help this plant along some, whereas when grown outdoors this plant is very self-sufficient.

Any amount of indirect light is suitable for English Ivy. The plant will grow more quickly when placed in a very sunny spot, but this plant can still live very comfortably and add greenery to a low-light area. English Ivy can handle average humidity, but try to make it a habit to inspect the leaves and possibly increase the moisture in the air around this plant if you notice dry foliage.

When grown indoors, Ivy can require a bit more care and maintenance and needs to be sprayed with water once a week to keep the leaves free from spider mites. 

Important! Hedera helix are poisonous if ingested, so be very careful if you have pets and/or small children.

Light

Common Ivy prefers bright indirect light. Direct light can be damaging, so avoid spots that receive direct light and opt for a shady spot if you bring the plant outdoors for the warmer months.

Water

Ivy houseplants have medium water requirements. Let the soil mostly, but not completely dry out between watering. It's a good time to water when the top several inches of the soil are dry. Ivy produces more vibrantly colored leaves when the plant receives plenty of water and the leaves may not be as striking if the plant is grown in drier conditions.

Temperature

Moderate temperatures, particularly overnight, are ideal for Ivy houseplants. Generally, comfortable room temperature is fine, but avoid placing the plant near heating vents in the winter and air conditioning vents in the summer.

English Ivy is more commonly known as an outdoor plant, and it can create a cozy ambience on a patio or outdoor space. Bring the Ivy back indoors before the temperatures dip below 50 degrees overnight.

Humidity

Ivy needs damp air in order to thrive and low humidity is a common problem for English Ivy when grown indoors. This is a plant that will thrive in a humid environment. Using a pebble tray with water or a humidifier can keep the plant happy in drier climates.

Fertilizer

For such a vigorous growing plant, Ivy does not require a lot of fertilization. Use a diluted complete liquid fertilizer or a fish or seaweed emulsion in the spring and during the growing season. Take a break from fertilizing the plant during the fall and winter.

Pro Tips

  1. Common Ivy has aerial roots that the plant uses to hold on to walls, a trellis, or anything nearby that it can reach. You may want to give the plant a support or trellis, so it has something to hold onto, and so it won't latch on to furniture or anything you don't want to become an impromptu trellis.
  2. Trim the tips of the vines to maintain a bushy and compact plant and prevent the Ivy from becoming leggy.
  3. Use the sections removed during pruning to propagate new plants. Place the cut ends in water and after roots form, the cuttings can be planted in soil.

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