It's time to vote on our 2017 photo contest! Vote for your favorite photos of the year here!

Irish Ivy

Hedera hibernica

Family: Araliaceae
Genus: Hedera (HED-er-uh) (Info)
Species: hibernica (hy-BER-nik-uh) (Info)
View this plant in a garden



Vines and Climbers

Foliage Color:


Bloom Characteristics:

Unknown - Tell us

Water Requirements:

Average Water Needs; Water regularly; do not overwater

Where to Grow:

Unknown - Tell us


12-18 in. (30-45 cm)


20-30 ft. (6-9 m)


USDA Zone 5a: to -28.8 C (-20 F)

USDA Zone 5b: to -26.1 C (-15 F)

USDA Zone 6a: to -23.3 C (-10 F)

USDA Zone 6b: to -20.5 C (-5 F)

USDA Zone 7a: to -17.7 C (0 F)

USDA Zone 7b: to -14.9 C (5 F)

USDA Zone 8a: to -12.2 C (10 F)

USDA Zone 8b: to -9.4 C (15 F)

USDA Zone 9a: to -6.6 C (20 F)

USDA Zone 9b: to -3.8 C (25 F)

USDA Zone 10a: to -1.1 C (30 F)

USDA Zone 10b: to 1.7 C (35 F)

USDA Zone 11: above 4.5 C (40 F)

Sun Exposure:

Full Sun


Unknown - Tell us

Bloom Color:


Bloom Time:



Grown for foliage


Provides winter interest

Other details:

Unknown - Tell us

Soil pH requirements:

Unknown - Tell us

Patent Information:


Propagation Methods:

Unknown - Tell us

Seed Collecting:

Unknown - Tell us


This plant has been said to grow in the following regions:

Roswell, Georgia

Cleveland, Ohio

Gardeners' Notes:


On Jul 19, 2015, hbharshman from Roswell, GA wrote:

I have Irish Ivy and A LOT OF IT. We bought a house in Feb. 2015 and 3/4 of the yard is Irish Ivy! It's climbing the trees, the fences, and trying to creep into the 1/3 of the yard that dots have it. My dad has come and sprayed a strong version of round up. Some of the leaves have turned yellow. I sprayed double what he did this past weekend hoping for better results. The waxy coating on the leaves makes me wonder if its even going to soak up into the Ivy. So two questions
1) If the spray works, what do i do once all the leaves have turned brown, do I get a serious rake back there?

2) If it doesn't work what do I need to do? I would like a back yard to enjoy, put a little fire pit back there etc. We cut down all the tall mini trees that seemed to be growing in them ... read more


On Jan 6, 2012, ironworker25 from Brighton, MI (Zone 5b) wrote:

I just purchased a plant that was just marked "ivy". After doing some research here on DG, I believe it is of the Irish variety. I only intended to keep the plant indoors to add some life and I know that the ivies sprawl out and are attractive plants overall. I am grateful to the members that left posts letting me know how invasive this plant is if I were to put it outdoors. We have enough invasive species in Michigan already and I don't want to add to them. Thanks everyone.


On Feb 12, 2011, redcamaro350ss from Statesville, NC wrote:

Please do not plant this in the United States. Especially do not "plant at the edge of dead trees as you walk through the woods." I understand planting things that are not native solely for their ornamental purposes. Planting things, however, in which you intend them to overtake native habitats is criminal. Please remember that with this plant in particular. This particular species is notorious for overtaking understory habitat as well as full grown trees.


On Jun 16, 2010, nc11657 from Herndon, VA wrote:

Ivy of any variety is a highly invasive and should only be used in very controlled situations. I have a half-acre of woods behind my house that is covered with ivy, partly because of my naivete years ago in thinking it would look wonderful on the trees, but mostly coming across from a neighbor's plantings. I will never be rid of it. This is a plant to avoid!


On Oct 16, 2008, mjolner88 from Bellingham, WA wrote:

This is just about my all time favorite species of ivy. I make dozens of cuttings a month, and bring them into the woods with me when I walk my dog. If I see a dead tree, I place a cutting at the base of it, and continue on my way, happy with the knowledge that very soon, the the dead will once again resemble the living.

Hibernica turns a wonderful red in the's reminiscent of a dinosaur egg...

This species is actually good down to never keeps growing 24/7and looks great when everything else is barren. Once mature (it has climbed for "x" amount of years), it will offer its fruit to the local bird population, at a time when no other food is available, thus ensuring the consumption of its seeds. The berries offer the birds a nut... read more


On Sep 8, 2004, cinemike from CREZIERES,
France (Zone 8a) wrote:

If there was one plant in the plant kingdom that I would exterminate, this would be it. It is a pernicious parasitic pest that is killing untold thousands of trees in Ireland, and throughout much of Europe, and probably beyond.
Common Ivy, Hedera helix, is bad enough, but it takes quite some time to kill its victim, and is not too difficult to remove, if caught early enough. This one seems to grow at a rate of knots and once it has hold of a tree, it is nearly impossible to remove.
Forget plants that are unpleasant to humans (stinging nettles etc.), this is the absolute pits!
If you find it, kill it!!!