Learn which plants thrive in your Hardiness Zone with our new interactive map!

How to Care For Variegated Swedish Ivy

By Jennifer Loucks ; Updated September 21, 2017

Variegated Swedish ivy is a low growing, trailing plant with green leaves that are tinted white on the edges. The plant is a perennial in USDA growing zones 10-11, but is planted as an annual in cooler climates. Variegated Swedish ivy is an aggressive growing plant that spreads quickly up to 18 inches in length. The plant makes a nice accent when planted as a ground cover or in containers and window boxes.

Find a location for variegated Swedish ivy that is partial sun or shade and provides a fertile and well-drained soil. Standard potting soil works well for container-grown plants.

Plant variegated Swedish ivy in a hanging or upright container or a flower bed as a creeping ground cover. Mix a slow-release fertilizer into the soil prior to planting the ivy. Do not apply additional fertilizer to the plant through the growing season when using a slow-release formula.

Dig a hole the same size as the root ball, set the plant in place, and gently pack soil in place around the roots. Water the plant immediately after planting to promote root growth.

Water the plant frequently during the growing season to keep the soil moist at all times, but not wet.

Apply a 20-20-20 balanced fertilizer to the plant every week if a slow-release fertilizer was not worked into the soil prior to planting.

Prune or pinch back the plant to prevent spindly growth during the growing season. Pruning will shape the trailing porting of container-grown ivy.

Inspect the plants periodically for mealybugs at the leaf axils. Spray infected areas of the plant with a solution of 50 percent isopropyl alcohol and 50 percent water once a week until the bugs are gone.


Things You Will Need

  • Slow-release fertilizer
  • Shovel
  • Water
  • 20-20-20 balanced fertilizer
  • Hand pruner
  • Isopropyl alcohol
  • Spray mister


  • Variegated Swedish ivy prefers a non-chlorinated water as chlorine can cause damage to the growth.

About the Author


Jennifer Loucks has been writing since 1998. She previously worked as a technical writer for a software development company, creating software documentation, help documents and training curriculum. She now writes hobby-based articles on cooking, gardening, sewing and running. Loucks also trains for full marathons, half-marathons and shorter distance running. She holds a Bachelor of Science in animal science and business from University of Wisconsin-River Falls.