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Why is My English Ivy Dying? Oh No!

Why is My English Ivy Dying? Oh No!

English ivy is a hardy plant known for its rambling growth on fences, tree trunks, walls, and other surfaces.

Also known as Hedera Helix, English ivy is a popular plant both indoors and outside and grows easily and abundantly with very little attention or assistance.

Given its unfussy nature, it’s important to recognize signs that English ivy may be in poor health so that it can be revived quickly.


Why is my English ivy dying?

Drooping, wilting, or drying English Ivy leaves may result from unfavorable temperatures, insufficient light, or inadequate humidity levels. Overwatering or underwatering English ivy can also cause signs of ill health, as can overfertilizing. In rarer cases, disease and pest infestations may result in plant death.


Overwatering English Ivy

Overwatering is dangerous for all plants, even very hardy breeds like ivy. Too much water can prevent an ivy plant’s roots from receiving the oxygen it needs to transport nutrients to its leaves and stems.

In addition to this, in severe cases of overwatering, fungal infections like root rot can occur.

When English ivy is overwatered, it most often starts to present with yellow and browning leaves. This is understandably confusing, as it may appear thirsty rather than soggy, but the best way to confirm suspicions is to feel the soil it is planted in.

Dense, moist soil plus brown leaves usually indicate overwatering and the beginning phases of root rot.

To rectify this ailment, start by allowing the plant to dry out. When watering protocols resume, ensure that you only water your ivy when the top layer of soil is dry to the touch.

If English ivy is potted, make sure water can escape through drainage holes, and never allow it to sit in dammed-up water. In no time, you should see a revival in your plant.


Underwatering English Ivy

English ivy prefers dryer soil but definitely still needs an adequate water supply to transport nutrients and minerals via its roots. The appearance of dry, brittle, brown leaves may signify that your ivy is thirsty.

Fortunately, this is an easy fix, and a good dose of water should set an underwatered ivy on the road to recovery.

Indeed, watering protocols should be adjusted to ensure English ivy does not suffer from neglect, as prolonged drought can be fatal.


Overfertilizing English Ivy

English ivy doesn’t require much fertilizing, and while it can be beneficial (especially for houseplants), an excess can hurt or kill it.

If an ivy plant that has recently been fertilized starts to droop, it may result from overfertilizing and a buildup of nitrogen in the soil.

In this regard, the best course of action is to repot the plant in fresh soil or, if this is not possible, to severely restrict fertilizing until such a time as the plant has recovered.


Pests and Diseases Killing English Ivy

If you have ruled out environmental factors and watering practices as the causes for your ivy’s distress, it may be time to inspect it for insects or diseases.

Inspect the undersides of leaves for aphids or the like, and if you happen across them, treat the plant with neem oil or insecticidal soap. In the case of severe infestations, prune away the infected areas.

Aside from root rot, bacterial leaf spot and fungal leaf spot are the two diseases that commonly affect English ivy.

In both cases, discoloration in the form of dark spots will appear on the leaves, round for bacterial infections and irregularly shaped for fungal infections.

These illnesses can be treated with organic bactericide and fungicide, respectively, and diseased areas cut away.


Ideal Growing Conditions for English Ivy

If English ivy shows signs of unhappiness, the first factor to consider is whether the plant is living in a space where it can thrive. These gorgeous creepers can be sensitive to temperature, light, and humidity.

English ivy grown outdoors has a relatively broad temperature tolerance and can grow successfully in climates that range from 45 to 80 degrees Fahrenheit (7 to 27 degrees Celsius), although it prefers cooler areas.

Indoor ivy should preferably reside in spaces where the temperature is between 60 and 65 degrees Fahrenheit (16 to 18 degrees Celsius) during the day and about 50 degrees Fahrenheit (10 degrees Celsius) at night.

In terms of light, medium light and partial shade are best for English ivy, and plants should be kept away from direct sunlight as this can cause them to appear droopy and stunted.

In younger plants, too much sunlight can burn and hurt them. Conversely, too little light, particularly when it comes to indoor ivy plants, can also stunt their growth.

Humidity, too, may impact the overall health of indoor ivy plants. While they can survive in normal household humidity levels, they prefer areas where humidity is medium to high.

They do not like dry air. If an ivy plant seems to be struggling, consider adding a humidity tray to its environment.

If your ivy looks to be dying, investigate whether its growing conditions are the root of the problem, and consider moving or transplanting your plants to better spaces.


Frequently Asked Questions about Why my English Ivy is Dying


How often should English ivy be watered?

Once a week should suffice, but it depends on the light and temperature in the plant’s environment. To best determine a watering schedule, check how long the topsoil dries out and adjust your watering accordingly.


Should English ivy be misted?

Misting ivy leaves is beneficial in environments where the air is dry. In especially hot and dry spaces, it is recommended that ivy plants be misted daily. Avoid making the soil soggy; just enough to evenly moisten it.


Why does my English ivy have silver dots on its leaves?

Microscopic white and silver dots, together with webbing and silver striping, indicates the presence of spider mites. Deal with this urgently by moving the plant into isolation and treating it with an organic miticide.



The splendor of English ivy is unsurpassed in the world of ornamentals, and this is doubly rewarding purely because it is such a low-maintenance plant.

With proper care, this evergreen vine will be a continuous joy both in the home and garden.