Ivy Care Guide

Hedera, commonly called ivy, is a genus of 12–15 species of evergreen climbing or ground-creeping woody plants in the family Araliaceae, native to western, central and southern Europe, Macaronesia, northwestern Africa and across central-southern Asia east to Japan and Taiwan. Hedera species are characterized by their ability to grow over other plants and strong stems that allow them to climb up trees and cliffs. Some can grow as high as 50 meters (160 feet) above the ground. Plants can be grown indoors in pots; they do well in containers with a loose, well-draining soil mix.


Ivy can tolerate a variety of lighting exposures, but medium to bright indirect light is best. Solid green varieties such as Hedera helix ‘Greenheart’ can withstand lower light levels, but variegated varieties such as Hedera helix ‘Golden Child’ will need brighter light to maintain their variegation. Direct light should be avoided, as it can cause leaves to burn and fade.

Water and Soil

Ivy likes to dry out slightly between watering’s. Before watering, test the soils moisture level. If the top level of soil (1-2”) appears and feels dry, the plant is ready for more water.

Temperature and Humidity

Many varieties of Ivy are cold hardy down to 35 degrees. However, when keeping Ivy as a houseplant the recommended temperature range is between 50 and 80 degrees Fahrenheit. Ivy typically does well with standard household humidity levels, but will benefit from added humidity.

What Else?

Ivy is a trailing plant which also loves to climb. If you give your Ivy a trellis, it will readily climb up it. Ivy can also be grown into a topiary, or displayed in a hanging basket.