Use of Ivy in Landscape Design
Traditionally, in landscape design ivy is used for growing medium-sized vines, but it is not less effective in the role of cover crops. At the same time its use does not have to be limited: vertical gardening with enough imagination may be unusual, and even extravagant.
Clever Use of Ivy in Landscaping
Ivy on Chicago University campus building
Ivy can climb anywhere, due to its talent to cling to even smooth rough surfaces using stealth roots. For example, if you set an ordinary wooden trellis by the light wall and wrap lattice strips around the branches instead of using solid textures, you will get a bizarre pattern of green cells or lozenges. Moreover, the series of arches, squares or triangles over the path due to the ivy twine can be elegant decoration of your garden and an excellent alternative to the usual massive hedges.
Of course, sometimes you will have to resort to trimming, but ivy tolerates it very well. Today there is a steady trend to create original live frames around windows and doors, and even imitation of framed passages in the wall, allowing you to create optical “trompe l’oeil” using ivy. As a ground cover, ivy will even hide communication lines, for example, by the fountain or pond, disguising pipes and other unsightly parts under lush green.
Ivy looks also great in pots on pedestals or stone bowls. Sorts with small delicate leaves, such as “Minima”, look great on mini flower beds and borders. Ivy with the most vivid patterned leaves bring inner glow effect in shady corners animating even the most boring design elements.
Different green sculptures of any shape can be formed out of ivy. This is a great alternative to the classic clipped topiary shrubs. At the same time the creation of “clipped” masterpieces requires much less effort and time. Actually, even cutting is not necessary for ivy. Sculptures are created of potted ivy by fixing any base wire frame (ring, ball or complex sculptures) in a pot with soil near the plant.