How to grow Ivy (with minimal sun)

Re: How to grow Ivy (with minimal sun)
Greetings,
I belong to a little brick bungalow in a densely populated area of a midwest city (St. Louis, MO). For the most part, there's about 6-8' between one house and it's next-door neighbor.
I have a strip approx. 4' x 20' on one side of my house where nothing (except moss) seems to want to grow. Gets sun for about 30-45 min. a day. I tried "Quality Shade" grass: it worked for a season or 2, then petered out.
Numerous houses on the block have ivy between the houses. It looks OK and I'm told it requires near zero maintenance.
Gardening is not my strong suit. There are all kinds of things I don't know about.
The 4' x 20' strip is slightly sandy. There is a slight erosion ridge from the neighbor's dysfunctional gutters.
Good candidate for ivy?
If so, a few hints/tips as to how to acquire/grow the stuff much appreciated.
Cheers, Puddin'
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clipped

Ivy can be invasive if it climbs walls, and can damage mortar or aluminum siding. Af far as starting it goes, cuttings can be rooted in water and then planted in soil. If you like what your neighbors have, ask them for a bunch of cuttings. If you plant it, dig out some old soil and put in some topsoil, then plant the rooted cuttings. Needs to be moist (not totally dry). It can get weedy, and collect debris. It can also strangle trees and spread, so should be contained.
My favorite for "no grow" spots is level soil, lay landscape cloth and cover with river rock. Another nice shade plant is hosta; bushy clump of leaves, and some varieties have a pretty blossom. Some are variegated, some solid green. Visit a local garden center for tips.
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wrote:

Agreed; I wouldn't recommend ivy anywhere near a building. Along a highway sound wall, sure, but even then it can and does get out of control.

I love hostas. Another option for your space would be ferns.
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I love hosta too, especially since they come back every year.
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-snip-
Here's a great little Hosta garden in upstate NY -- This man's son sold hosta's to support himself through college & became my son's favorite high school teacher.
Go back to the main page to see how many varieties there are- http://www.hostalibrary.org /
There are a lot more varieties than I ever imagined before seeing this garden.
Jim
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Puddin' Man wrote:

Ivy is easy to grow and hard to get rid of. It attaches itself to the wall and even goes inside any cracks it finds. It can damage wood (caused enough dampness to rot it and it gets through seams and gets behind it.) Brick and stone it attaches to and you can't get all of it off. I recommend against it. I speak as one who knows from experience. Even sand blasting did not get it all off.
--
Joseph Meehan

Dia duit
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Puddin' Man wrote:

Dunno but ours grows in Florida "soil" (sand) under oak trees. ____________

1. Buy one or more plants
2. Plant
3. Water and fertilize once in a while.
4. As it grows (or from the plant(s) you buy if sizeable), snip off pieces maybe 8-10" long and stick the ends in the ground on about a one foot grid so they will root and fill the space faster.
5. Don't let it grow on your house.
-- dadiOH ____________________________
dadiOH's dandies v3.06... ...a help file of info about MP3s, recording from LP/cassette and tips & tricks on this and that. Get it at http://mysite.verizon.net/xico
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dadiOH wrote:

There are a lot of "houseplants" which are exotic and do damage in landscape in Florida. One of the worst is asparagus fern - bears red berries, carried by birds, and becomes very weedy in hedges. I hate the stuff, and it is impossible to dig out.
My mom planted ivy beneath a nice oak tree in Florida. It eventually strangled the oak. I believe kudzu was once somebody's house plant, and it had done horrendous damage in the south. We have python's and poisonous toads in Florida now, so may as well give up :o)
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Check for your state extension service. I've gotten excellent help from extensions services in several states. TB
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snipped-for-privacy@bellsouth.net wrote:

Very good advice.
--
Joseph Meehan

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What others have said about ivy being invasive is pretty much true. If you want something that's easy to care for, and pretty much bulletproof, I'd suggest pachysandra. Any decent garden center will have it available. It's usually sold in "flats" - trays of soil, instead of individual little pots. The flats contain quite a few plants, and are priced accordingly, so they always seem expensive compared to other plants. Ignore this perception and buy them. If you want to fill the area quickly, figure on one plant for every half-foot square. Half that many if you don't mind waiting 2-3 years to cover the area.
Pachysandra will grow in anything from deep shade to full sun. They spread nicely over a few years. I've had some in a shady corner now for 20 years. Every winter, they're pummeled by large falling icicles, and they laugh at the abuse. If they seem a bit pale now and then, I give them the same type of plant food intended for evergreens & rhododendrons. They like slightly acid soil.
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Doug Kanter wrote:

A very good choice. I have used it with very good success (Mid Ohio)
I would also suggest Periwinkle aka Vinca Myrtle.
--
Joseph Meehan

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Yep. That's another one. That stuff will grow in radioactive broken glass, and be happy. :-)
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I've had good luck with the vinca (in St. Louis). It fills nicely, and doesn't seem to take over the place.

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Thanks to all for helpful info on this little issue.
I knew that ivy was invasive and should be kept away from masonry, etc, but the proposed patch could've been just another stop on my weed-whacker route. Apparently it's not necessarily that simple.
Turns out there's a neighbor with both ivy and hasta (who actually knows gardening <g>) who has offered some hasta.
So I'll try hasta this season. Maybe ivy next season if the hasta doesn't work out.
Cheers, Puddin'
wrote:

...
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That's HOSTA, with an "O" in the middle. Take a look at the spacing of your friend's hosta before they're dug up. Unless he's growing miniatures, they will quickly reach 3-4 feet in diameter. Every few years, you can dig them up, split them, and give them to unsuspecting friends. Even though it'll look a bit empty at first, be sure to plant them with enough space. And, not up against a wall, unless you like smashing your knuckles against the bricks when it's time to dig them up.
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