Contrary to popular belief, ivy is not a single plant, but a whole genus, Hedera, which belongs to the Araliaceae family and is home to some 15 species. These are very popular plants for their simple care and their great ornamental value as climbing plants, and they are capable of completely changing the image of walls, pergolas and even the facade of a house.
They are quite adaptable plants, resistant to diseases and, as if all this were not enough, cheap too. However, not all types of ivy they are the same, and if you want to get the most out of them, you should know them. These are the most common ivy varieties to grow at home.
The commonly called Algerian ivy It is a species that has its origin in North Africa, as its name indicates. It is a type of ivy that grows up to 8 meters high thanks to its aerial roots. Its leaves are variegated or a beautiful bluish-green tone, lobed in shape, and its flowers are so small that they are not decoratively striking.
It is common to grow it as a vertical hedge, or in hanging pots letting its stems hang down. Like most varieties of ivy, it is toxic if ingestedso care must be taken if there are pets or small children in the area where we plan to grow it.
You may be interested in taking a look at the following EcologíaVerde article on What are the most poisonous plants in the world.
Canary ivy or nuanced ivy is distinguished by having some larger leaves than those of Hedera helix, the most widespread species. The flowers of this outdoor ivy are also inconspicuous, forming small umbrellas with yellowish tones that go quite unnoticed.
Canary ivy can be grown both in full sun and in shade or semi-shade, although those with variegated leaves will require direct exposure for at least a few hours a day. This species can also withstand occasional frosts, though only if it is in a relatively sheltered location.
Grown in a pot, it requires transplant every 2 or 3 yearsalways in spring.
Common ivy is the most widespread of the ivy varieties in cultivation. The stems of the Hedera helix They can grow up to 30 or 40 meters high under ideal conditions, being one of the varieties with the greatest growth potential, with up to almost half a meter a year.
It is easily recognized by its characteristic leaves, which can be dark green, elegant and highly decorative, or bright green, also great ornamental value. Their shape is oval, triangular or kidney-shaped, and they can be found both pentalobed and trilobed. Whether or not the leaves have lobes depends on whether they are found on flowering branches, since only these give rise to the lobes.
The flowers, as in the rest of the species, are yellowish-green and inconspicuous, normally appearing on plants that are at least 8 years old.
Now that you know more about this type of outdoor ivy, discover other Sun Ornamental Plants in the following post that we recommend.
Commonly known as Madeira ivy, confused with the hedera helix Very easily. Like this, it is a bushy and evergreen climbing plant. The color of its leaves is brownish green, which sometimes also offers reddish nerves. As for its flowers, as with most plants of the Araliaceae family, they are small and light in color.
Naturally it usually grows near the slopes of the rocks or in wooded areas attached to the trunk of the trees. So you prefer the hot and humid environments to develop.
One of the types of ivy most used as upholstery for facades and walls. This woody climbing plant, with bright green evergreen leaves and umbel-shaped inflorescences, stands out for its resistance to both cold and heat and for its rapid growth.
We leave you the following post with other outdoor plants resistant to cold and heat.
Also known as Himalayan ivy, the hedera nepalensis or Nepal ivy, is one of the types of climbing ivy that have perennial dark green leaves, capable of reaching a height above the trees. 30 meters.
For its optimal growth it prefers the acidic or neutral pH soils, with a preferably humid substratum, hence it is important to ensure continuous irrigation. Likewise, it is capable of withstand drought well and nutrient-poor soils. Therefore, it grows well in semi-shade as well as in direct sunlight.
Also evergreen, known as Japanese ivy, is a plant that reaches 10m high and that, in case of not being able to use an area in height to grow, it can colonize the soil. These types of ivy have dark green stems and diamond-shaped leaves and are usually grown for their ornamental value, although they are also medicinal uses are attributed.
How to care for ivy
The care so that any of the previous varieties of ivy develop healthy and beautiful are quite similar: a warm environment between 14 and 20ºa few hours of sunlight (also in semi-shade), a weekly watering in winter or a couple in summer and a little liquid fertilizer every two weeks.
In the event that you want to obtain a new specimen of the same plant, you must make a propagation by cuttings taking a healthy stem from the plant to replant it. If the environmental conditions are optimal at all levels, reproduction can take place at any time of the year (although it is better to avoid the coldest months).
Do not hesitate to take a look at this other post on ivy care to learn more.
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