How to Grow Ivy


Ivy is a wonderful perennial vine that can be trained on trellises, topiaries or any frame you make for it. Some ivy plants are evergreen and look stunning on a wall or trellis against the snow in the winter. Ivy is very easy to grow and if you aren't careful, can take over your yard or garden. It is mainly used as a cover for the ground, fence, wall or anything that you would want to hide. Ivy can be grown in containers also, so you can have it indoors or out.

Step 1

Pick a location where the ivy will have a place to climb or a container that can be hung or set up on a high planter or ledge, so the plant can hang down. It will need at least 4 hours of full or filtered sun per day and should not be located anywhere where there is extreme temperature changes, such as by a heater or air conditioning unit.

Step 2

Prepare the soil by adding one part compost to three parts potting soil for container growing. If planting directly into the ground, dig a hole three times the size of the root ball of the ivy plant, and mix a few handfuls of compost to the dug out soil.

Step 3

Plant the ivy's root ball into the container at the same level it is in the container you purchased it in. For ground planting, backfill the soil mixture into the hole until it reaches the level needed for the root ball. Fill in halfway up the root ball and water. Then continue to fill in the soil until the roots are completely covered and pack down firmly.

Step 4

Water the plant generously when you first plant it to encourage the roots to grow. You should keep the soil moist for the first two weeks and then cut back the water to only when the top of the soil feels dry. Do not add fertilizer until the plants are well established. This should take about four months. Then follow directions on the fertilizer and add every four to six months.

Step 5

Pinch back tips to grow bushier plants. Use English Ivy for ground cover and Boston Ivy to grow on a wall. Prune or redirect growth if it starts to cover other plants or is preventing them from getting sun.

Things You'll Need

  • Ivy plant
  • Compost
  • Vine fertilizer
  • Container
  • Potting soil
  • Spade


  • Ivy Plants
  • Growing: Ivy
Keywords: gowing ivy, planting ivy vines, caring for vining plants

About this Author

Dale DeVries has been cooking for over 40 years. First teaching her five daughters to cook, she quickly moved on to teaching at a private High School. Dale has catered parties and weddings throughout her life, from gourmet to the simple family type dinners. She says the fun is in creating new recipes that noone has heard of.