English Ivy is my arch nemesis!

When I purchased this house ten years ago I noticed the back door neighbor and their wild lot of English ivy covered trees but never realized it would be such a problem.

All the trees in their yard next to mine are covered in English ivy. When ivy grows upright it produces mature stems which bloom and produces berries which the birds love.


The vines produce racemes of tiny white flowers in the Fall which in January ripen into black berries the birds attack in flocks. The seeds in the berries pass through the digestive tracks unharmed and are deposited coated in a natural fertilizer.

Along the fence and other areas where the birds rest and defecate, hundreds of ivy seedlings germinate in the Spring.


After several years of neglect this has produces colonies of ivy along the fence and around the bird bath.


I am going to devote an afternoon to pulling up these ivy plants and cleaning these areas soon!

About ten years ago I planted Holly Osmanthus (Osmanthus x fortunei) along the parking area on the North side of the house when I purchased the house. I love the holly-like evergreen leaves and the very fragrant white flowers which are produced in the Fall.

They keep their limbs down to the ground and it was time to limb them up as they were making it difficult to park two cars side by side. In ten years they have grown from about two feet high and wide to about 15 feet tall and as much wide.


I trimmed off all the lower limbs that were making it difficult to park on that area of the drive.


I did find two empty bird nest but I haven’t seen bird activity in that area this season so hopefully I didn’t interrupt any breeding cycles.

Now the entire parking are is open and I can also get under them to weeds out oak and ivy seedlings!


Driving through a neighborhood back from Cup-A-Joe coffee shop today I saw this yarn bombed stop sign!


Love it!



Filed under Pest, Plants

21 responses to “English Ivy is my arch nemesis!

  1. English ivy is invasive here, also! Good luck in your eradication efforts!


  2. Your neighbor should be ashamed, but he undoubtedly isn’t. You should retaliate by planting something appropriate along the property line, like elderberry, milkweed, Virginia creeper …


  3. The Mystical Mansion and Garden

    Lots of work! Hang in there! It will look much better when you get finished. If I were closer, I would come help.


  4. Good luck with the ivy eradication. It isn’t easy.


  5. I spent two hours pulling up ivy and got about a 15’X20′ area cleared. I was horrified at how big the climbing stems are! I keep meaning to get back to it, but good intentions…
    I had a Holly hedge growing in my neighbors yard that bordered our fence. The cedar wax wings loved it! But, when I walked barefoot in back yard, ouch!
    We have an extraordinary ugly sculpture in our present town, and somebodies improved it with yarn. It must not have lasted the winter, though. It is gone, but the ugly sculpture isn’t!


  6. I feel your “ivy” pain. Battled it about 15 yrs. ago when I wanted to plant a formal herb garden where the ivy was. The herb garden lasted about 3 years until we sold the house. Drove by a few years later and poof, all ivy covered. 😦


    • The Mystical Mansion and Garden

      The mansion has a Holly hedge all along the front porch and in front of the sunrooms… I looked like I had been in a cat fight every time I trimmed it.


      • The Mystical Mansion and Garden

        There was a bed of ivy in front of the west sunroom and growing up the side of the house. I decided it would be a good place for the Colocasia, so I started the battle. To make things worse, all mixed in the ivy was Vinca-like vine (smaller leaves and they trail some 30′-lol) that was crawling all though it… I dig and pulled for days. The Ivy didn’t come back even after 2 years, but the other vine tried.


      • Yes, Vinca minor is the small leaved vine and it can be very weedy, too!


      • The Mystical Mansion and Garden

        I had Vinca minor and major at the mansion. I don’t miss either one in Missouri!


      • Ah, yes. When I trimmed the Osmanthus my arms looked like I was having an allergic outbreak but it was just all the irritation from the spiked leave. It took several days to clear up!


  7. That’s a lot of English ivy!


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