How about Ivy?

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I understand that ivy is great for preventing erosion and has very deep roots. But will it hurt trees if it climbs them? Or will it hurt buildings, like if it climbs the wall of a wood shed or house?
Can it be easily started from seeds? That would be the lowest cost way to go.
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English Ivy, though lovely and tenacious is on the non-native invasive plant list. It is a parasite and will eventually kill trees if left to its own devices. It damages the mortar on brick houses and spreads via seeds that birds drop. I don't have any planted in my yard, but pull up seedlings often. Carolyn

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So what kind of ivy grows best in the U.S. and isn't that way? Is there any that's more tame and will just make a good ground cover without hurting trees or buildings?
I'm in Colorado.
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There are many types of ground cover other than vines. Are you determined to grow ivy or some sort of vine?
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Well I heard that ivy puts down really deep roots and is good for erosion control on slopes, and we have slopes and a long embankment in our yard and really need that.
I was also reading something about english ivy being "evergreen in zones 5 up, but that doesn't make sense, I've never seen it green in the winter here in Denver.
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It isn't reliably evergreen for me in zone 6. It depends on the winter and exposure.
I guess I don't know what you mean by "deep roots." To me, deep roots would be more than a foot deep. English ivy tends to have very shallow roots in my garden. It is quite easy to accidentally tear it from the ground. Really, for erosion control, you only need to have something growing on the surface. For instance, turf grass will control erosion but only has roots that go down a couple inches. I have hostas, Siberian iris, sedum, ajuga, tradescantia, black-eyed Susan, and daylilies growing on a slope for erosion control. I did plant some English Ivy, but it has done poorly.
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Ajuga seems like cool stuff. I planted lots of it all over these slopes and will see how it does now.
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Popcorn Lover wrote:

Vinca minor is another quick-spreading possibility that is readily available just about anywhere. Is this a shady location? Ivy and vinca do well in shade. If you've got more sun, creeping phlox will fill in nicely and does well on slopes.
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Thanks, I'll check into this.
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wrote :

I put in 100, 1 gallon pots of vinca minor on a slope about 8 years ago hoping to prevent erosion. They did nothing for several years. Some of them died, and the area got infested with weeds. The most troublesome weeds where other vines like wild strawberry, wild honeysuckle, and persicaria. It also got an infestation of thistle and other hard to eliminate weeds. After 8 years, the slope is about half covered. Needles to say, they did nothing for erosion for the first several years.
Another choice might be Euonymus fortunei 'Coloratus' http://www.mobot.org/gardeninghelp/plantfinder/Plant.asp?code 20
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I asked at the nursery and they suggested creeping phlox, which they say is perennial, drought resistant, and has blue flowers. I picked up 4 of them today for $10.
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Ivy is only invasive in certain climates in the US. It is definitely invasive in the coastal parts of the Pacific Northwest. It is less so where I live (in the inland Northwest), and in fact I don't know anywhere it has "invaded" the native forest in my city, because it's simply too dry to support it without irrigation. I would say that Denver, being dryer, would have even fewer problems with invasiveness. It WILL grow, and grow vigorously, anywhere it receives irrigation, but you could keep it in check by simply not giving it water at the margins. In other words, it will send out runners, and they won't root, because the ground will be too dry.

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I don't think English ivy has deep roots. You really don't need deep roots to prevent erosion, just a network of roots near the surface. In some areas, ivy is quite invasive. I can't get it to grow well here in zone 6. Every winter it tends to die back and/or the deer eat it. Some people claim that it will harm your house, but I think that is controversial. There are vines that will work their way under siding and cause damage, but that hasn't been my experience with ivy. Others will disagree. If you don't want it to grown on the house, just cut it back a couple time a year and prevent it from taking hold on your structure. I think that there is some controversy over whether ivy will damage trees. I don't think so myself. Others will disagree. When English ivy blooms and produces fruit and seeds, it starts to decline. Therefore, it is unusual to find ivy seeds. Ivy is grown from cutting or division. It is quite easy to root. You can take some cuttings and put them in moist earth and they will root. Therefore, I doubt anyone would propagate ivy from seed.
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It can kill trees and it can distroy buildings, and even on just a hillside, it offers a nesting area for evey kind of mouse/rat/and other pests you can think off. Once you have it growing, you'll never be rid of it without costing you mega bucks.

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Ok, the heck with that then.
Let me tell you about the area I have in mind. We live in Denver and have a shed on a slope. ( The house was just built & we want to prevent erosion ) In the back of the shed is the neighbors garage with about 10 feet between them, a chain link fence and no sprinklers or water there. It probably gets 5 hourd a day of middle of the day sun, but is shaded by the shed & garage on each end.
What can we plant there for ground cover, that will prevent erosion, live strictly on rain and snow water and fill in that area nicely to prevent erosion?
Ajuga?
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I could give you advice, but it would be worthless as I live in the High Mojave Desert and deal with wind and heat and some flooding. Maybe something like clover to grow fast and then some small trees or bush's to help hold the soil. I grow ice plant ot here, but don't know if it would last your winters.
I use to run a garden service and one thing ( costly too ) was to get rid of ivy and I've seen the damage it can do.
wrote :

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wrote:

Sounds like a perfect spot for a compost pile. zhan
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But the shed is on a slope and we need to prevent erosion that could topple the shed.
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On Mon, 27 Jun 2005 18:59:06 -0500, Popcorn Lover

Oh. Around here there is a common ground cover called asparagus fern. Can't think of the botanical name right off. But its roots form a dense mat that would protect against erosion and is dense enough to prevent weeds from sprouting.
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Ouch! http://www.aspca.org/toxicplants/M01831.htm
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