English Ivy - Knowledgebase Question

Lansing, IL
Question by wjjk01
September 5, 2005
Hi, I wanted to know if it is safe to put english ivy around a pine tree tree that has hostas around it. Will it hurt the tree and or hostas? Thank You, Lisa


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Answer from NGA
September 5, 2005

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English ivy or Hedera helix can be very aggressive. You would want to make sure it did not climb the tree (this adds weight to the tree and can increase storm damage as a result) and also clear a bit of space around each hosta in the spring so it does not become smothered. Initially this will be easy to do but over time as the ivy grows thicker it may be more difficult. You might consider using one of the less-robust variegated varieties, or possibly consider Vinca minor which does not climb and is, in me experience, a good companion with mediumn to large hostas. I hope this helps.

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