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I have a fence covered in ivy that has climbed onto my neighbour's wall (neighbour's is to the left of my house) and the fence is to the side (not back).

I have never had this issue in 6 years, the growth may have been facilitated by the warm summer and by the light.

My neighbour is expecting for me to sort this out and to get someone round to her to cut the ivy and for me to pick up the tab. She is basically assuming that the ivy comes from my side.

My problem is that I am not sure where the roots of the ivy are, meaning that it may well be their ivy, too (I can see a thick branch coming from their side, creeping through the wooden fence).  I am worried that if I cut the ivy on their side, I will be setting a precedent and I will then be expected to do this again if the problem reoccurs.

Any advice would be greatly appreciated: shall I get rid of the ivy altogther? 

Thanks in advance.


I actually find Ivy very pleasing on the eye, and it makes for a good habitat for insects and such like.  It even can give the appearance of a nice hedge and can obscure ugly fencing/divides.

People don't half moan about ivy!  I don't even think it's that hard to manage.   To get rid of it just pull it down, or even easier,  slice a section of stem out and it will just die off past that point.  (That would take all of about five minutes.)   Pull the rest down when it's dead.

I'd love to cover my house in it.  But I don't have modern bricks or cement mortar.  Which is apparently enough to keep the ivy from doing harm.  If I was your neighbour, and the house was relatively modern, I'd elect to keep it - it's a good natural insulator.  The only thing that puts me off slightly is spider ingress through open windows.


Not so good when it gets into the roof, though.

For good neighbourly relations I would ensure the ivy doesn't go wandering.  I would certainly stop it going up the neighbours wall, as that can be regarded as trespass.


I agree that the ivy should not go wandering.

The issue I have is that I do not know if it's actually my ivy - they have some on their side of the fence, too.

So I am not sure if I have to pick up the tab...


I would have thought it the same as overhanging branches of trees. If they want to cut it back they can, but you do not have to pay for it. Ivy running up a wall is easy to control. Take a pair of loppers and cut it through at the base. It will then die above that point. It will release its hold on the wall and it will peel off easily. If you did not actually plant ivy against their wall, it could just as easily be weed ivy on their side.




I did not plant it, I have been in the house for 6 years and I found it there.

I can understand that it's a pain, it's covering their bathroom window and for some reason this year it has leaned their way (it's never happened before).

But I thought it was a bit cheeky to shift it onto me ... I would like to know if legally it is the same as over hanging branches. You make your point perfectly: cutting at the base will release its hold to the wall and then peel off, which is something I guess they could do themselves?  I think that their idea is that someone has to go up a ladder and cut it that way.  I can get a local guy to do it on their side when he comes to me, but they would need to contribute!


We have ivy all over the place. It was growing up the garage wall. I cut it at the base and let it wither. It was getting too high up in the oak tree. I cleared an area at the base of the tree. All the ivy up the tree has died and fallen off. I dont see what their problem is. they can cut it and peel it themselves. If you try and peel it off while it is still alive, the aerial roots (suckers) will pull off mortar and leave a right mess.  A lot of mine is common stuff that creeps in from the wood next door. I  don't expect the owners of the wood to clear it, I do it myself. Where it is causing no problem,  I leave it for the birds and insects.


What I would do is tell them you have someone coming to clear your ivy that is out of control.  Then they can have a word with the chap to have their ivy cut if they wish, at their expense.

If it is your ivy on their side, I think the cost is down to you.  Sorry.  As I said before, it is legally trespass.


Unless it's a cultivated form of ivy the likelihood is that it's grown from seeds dropped by birds and it sounds as if it's been allowed to ramble wherever it likes with no form of control from anyone. There's probably more that one individual plant involved. 

I think that in all fairness it sounds like a joint problem and should be tackled jointly - that way you can both control it from your own sides of the fence.  If you can see roots/stems clearly on her side of the boundary point it out and explain that it's a weed  and you can tackle together. 


Very well said Dove and a good diplomatic suggestion..


My neighbour also has an ivy-covered wall which divides our properties . We cannot see where the roots of the ivy climbing the wall, originate from, but we each cut sections of it away when we see it becoming a nuisance. It is a good idea to talk to each other and together the problem can be resolved without anyone having to foot a bill! We dont talk to each other enough these days. A simple friendly conversation can work wonders!

I have ivy growimg up my walls....planted Buttercup a lovely yellow variety several years ago.  It is a vigorous, invasive plant.  I now control it......where no longer required I cut it just above the base and treat those cut areas with SBK.  I also shear it back to the wall and couple of feet from the top.  

Ivy serves a purpose...evergreen, attractive all year and easy.....but it's not the ideal garden plant.  

Dove's suggestion that Conny and her neighbour sort this issue together is sensible.  This will be an annual task. At least talk.  If no resolution I would cut it back to suit me.  If the ivy is likely to be a perennial problem I would get rid of it and plant something else.


There are some stems clearly on their side, I can see them through a gap in the wooden fence.  I have had the ivy cut about twice a year as part of normal gardening maintenance (trimmed and cut at the base, it has also spread into the ground, which is no good either),  but I have never seen it so out of control.  The person who has come round to have a look at it said that because the summer has been particularly warm, the ivy has grown more, plus there may be something to do with the light as to why it leans towards my neighbour's wall.  I think that if someone had to climb on a ladder and painstakingly remove it from the wall as it is, it would not work , but the suggestion made by Fidgetbones, to cut it at the base and let it dry and then pull it seems really sensible and it's something that they can do themselve.  I will ask the gardener if they can access their garden and he can explain this to them, and cut it at the base in their garden too, if needed.  This would also be a lot less expensive.

Grimble2: the issue with my neighbours is that they do not seek to take responsibility for anything.  I agree people need to talk, but they also need to take responsibility for themselves!


When you do get round to attacking it I wouldn't leave it to dry before removing it.  I did that and found it almost impossible to remove the 'roots' which grow out from the stems to anchor the ivy to the wall.  The areas I did when it was still fresh came off pretty easily.


Legally, if something overspills in someone else's garden, is it the responsibility of the owner of the garden where the roots are, or do the overhanging branches/leaves can be cut by the occupants of the garden where they overspill?


Yes, the owner who is being invaded can cut back to the boundery.  But it is the responsibility of the owner who is invading not to do so.

In my experience the ownership of Ivy is a bit tricky and you need to be a bit careful ...

I had a bit of a disaster in a rented house ...

Ivy was getting out of control on a stone wall at end of garden - attacking the mortar etc -some of the top blocks were becoming loose. It was also running up two stories high neighbour's (stone) house was at least a foot thick and about 8 ft wide ...

Hadn't ever spoken to those neighbours  - at end of garden- on another street and they only had a second floor window visible from our house/garden...and only a small yard at the back.

It was part of our contract to look after the garden - so I mentioned it to the landlady  -she said it belonged to the old lady in the house at the back  - 'Old lady'  loved her ivy and they had argued about it damaging the garden wall etc...   (Old lady had moved on too - from noises coming from there it was someone with children)

Landlady said do what ever I thought was best  -  not fancying having to keep on top of trimming it every year... I cut it off at the roots, took huge sheets off our garden wall....

Then the whole lot on the house wall started dying off... it looked absolutely dreadful and no idea how you would get rid of it ....think you would either have to wait till it rotted off (many many years I would imagine) or maybe get scaffolding up (but think they'd struggle to have the space)

Luckily they never spoke to us about it (while I lived there) but sure they weren't pleased...


I have a canner it stands in my consevotory do I cut the leaves back to the soil ?

also when do I pot it on into a biger pot. thanks.


Hi Olga84   If you start a new thread with Canna in it's title you'll attract the attention of members with knowledge of their care.  You'll find the New Thread button in green on the right of this page 

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