Answer: The best plan is to cut the ivy away. According to the Brick Institute of America, this is safer than pulling it away. Pulling away may pull away mortar and loose bricks as well. Chemicals may stain the bricks or mortar. Immediately after removing the ivy use a stiff brush and laundry detergent to remove the pads that hold the ivy to the masonry. If you let them dry they will be nearly impossible to remove. Some types of vines have rootlike anchors that burrow into the mortar. These will eventual dry up and disappear once the vine is removed.
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