Top tips for growing ivy indoors

Top tips for growing ivy indoors

While we often think of ivy thriving outdoors—climbing a brick wall, spilling over a fence, or working its way through the ground—it is also a popular houseplant, and with proper care can grow well indoors. Most ivy species are easy-care planters but there are a few tricks to keep them growing at their best.

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Light requirements

Climbing vines and rambling ground covers, ivy species can thrive in shade with moderate to regular water and tolerate some sun. It’s a good idea to give your ivy bright, indirect light when you’re indoors. With too much shade, the plant can grow leggy, and too much direct light can burn its leaves. Humidity is generally good for ivy, and moderate temperatures are ideal.

Water and soil requirements

Ivy grows best when planted in well-drained soil. Most plants have moderate water needs and do not like to be waterlogged, so be sure to let the soil dry out between waterings. Once a week during the spring and summer, and less often in the winter, is typical. Don’t fertilize too much; Feeding ivy once a month during the warmer months is usually a good bet.

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Potting ivy

according to The New Southern Living Garden Book, “Ivy is excellent in pots and hanging baskets, trained into intricate patterns on walls, or grown on wire frames to create overhead plants. The arboreal forms make wonderful additions to foundation plantings and shade gardens.” Hanging baskets allow ivy tendrils to spread over the sides and give them plenty of room to grow. They are also easy to hang near a window to get the indirect light that ivy needs. An all-purpose mix or potting mix for indoor plants is enough to start growing ivy.

Spread of ivy

When the ivy gets too tall, you can cut off parts of the trunk to maintain its shape. To propagate more plants, you can also take cuttings and root them in water to start new ivy grows. Start with English ivy (such as ‘Gold Dust’ or ‘Baltica’) or Algerian ivy for dark green or variegated green and cream foliage.

If you love ivy but are worried about it growing and taking over your garden, growing it indoors is a good way to keep it under control.

What are your favorite easy-care houseplants? Do you have any pots of ivy in your home?

Frequently asked questions

  • Indoor ivy needs bright light to grow, not direct sunlight. Without adequate artificial lighting, ivy will not appear variegated and its growth will be stunted. Ivy needs room temperatures between 50°F to 70°F during the day.

  • While indoor ivy does not suffer from many plant diseases, houseplants are still susceptible to pests, including mealybugs, mites, aphids, whiteflies and scales. In addition, termites may use ivy as an access point into your home.

  • Pothos, or Devil’s Ivy (Epipremnum aureum), is a fast-growing indoor ivy that grows more than 40 inches per year. This plant is relatively low-maintenance and easy to grow. Pothos prefers shadier areas, making it an excellent houseplant.

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