arrrrgh! Ivy

Asked June 18, 2019, 11:48 AM EDT

I have a problem with ivy growing up the side of the garage. I beat it back again and again. Is there a way to rid myself of this? I hate poisons, but may be open to using some on this ivy.

Polk County Oregon english ivy

1 Response

If you're committed to avoiding chemicals in your ivy removal, lots and lots of hand pulling is the main option. If you are starting in on a big ivy removal project, first create ivy-free circles around the bases of trees to protect them from being overgrown and toppled by a heavy growth of ivy. Also prioritize removing ivy that is flowering or fruiting, and keeping the ivy contained in the area where you first found it. And of course since ivy re-sprouts from tiny fragments, please do not mulch or try to compost the ivy you remove, but bag it and dispose of it in the trash. If you clear an area, keep checking for new sprouts and pulling them out over time to ensure the ivy doesn't reclaim the ground you have gained.

Here's an article with details on one person's backyard ivy removal project completed with manual methods: https://extension.oregonstate.edu/news/english-ivy-can-be-contained

If you become overwhelmed and end up contemplating use of chemicals after all, cutting the ivy and then spot treating the freshly cut stump can be quite effective at killing ivy with minimal use of chemicals (relative to spraying the surfaces of leaves).
More details are here: https://pnwhandbooks.org/weed/problem-weeds/ivy-common-english-hedera-helix Of course always follow directions and precautions on the label.

I hope that helps you get started and good luck!