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Hedera helix

English ivy

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Key information

Plant type

Evergreen climber

Flower colour

White

Feature

Attractive seed-heads, Attractive to wildlife

Hardiness

Hardy

Skill level

Beginner

photo by bbc.co.uk/gardening

Plant details

A single English ivy plant can find many uses all round the garden. It can be used to cover a wall in shade where few other plants thrive, it can be trained to climb up or spread out along a low wall. Being evergreen, it is perfect for covering pergola poles, or creating a leafy backdrop under clematis and climbing roses that provides winter interest. Or use young plants to train around the outsides of winter hanging baskets. English ivy can be trimmed into shape at any time of year. It is a valuable plant for wildlife and is recommended by the RSPB and loved by Bill Oddie, particularly for providing berries for birds in winter when most others have been eaten. Many insects also feed on the nectar of its white flowers. Be careful when handling it if you have sensitive skin as its sap can be irritating.

Family: Araliaceae

Genus: Hedera

Species: helix

Plant type: Evergreen climber

Flower colour: White

Foliage colour: Dark green

Feature: Attractive seed-heads, Attractive to wildlife

Sun exposure: Full sun, Partial shade, Shade

Soil: Well-drained/light, Clay/heavy, Acidic, Chalky/alkaline, Dry, Sandy

Hardiness: Hardy

Skill level: Beginner

Height: 1000cm


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