Ivy Grows on You6th November 2010 • Biodiversity • Stephanie Donaldson
Natural England wants us to remember that ivy is one of the best wildlife-friendly plants – so don’t rush to remove it unless it’s really in the way. The dense matted growth is perfect for bird’s nests as well as a place for insects to hibernate. The late flowers produce a final source of nectar for insects and during January and February the berries are vital food for over-wintering birds. If you really hate ivy, Fatsia japonica is nearly as good. It is hardy in most parts of the country and my large Fatsia’s flowers are loved by insects while the berries are devoured by blackbirds.