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The 12 plants of Christmas. Plant 2: Ivy

Although this is Ivy’s top plant spot … we wanted to ask the question, which do you prefer, the holly or the Ivy?

Ivy is, during 11 months of the year, not a much-loved plant. It strangles other plants and grows out of control. However in December all is forgiven of the Ivy, and it is embraced and loved once again. Adding greenery to the garden, berries for the birds and other wildlife, and protection from the cold.

Over the next 12 days, The Wrigglers are going to list their top Christmas garden plants.

Some advice from the pros

RHS

Here’s info from RHS on Growing Ivy

Gardening know how

How Do You Take Care Of Ivy

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After more info on Christmas plants for the garden? Here are some web-links from the experts:

English Garden Mag – 19 VIBRANT PLANTS THAT FLOWER AT CHRISTMAS

David Domoney – Best Christmas plants for Winter Garden Colour

RHS – Christmas Greenery

Will you be Pruning over Christmas?

  • First remove dead, diseased or dying branches
  • Then tie in any new shoots needed to fill supports
  • Prune any flowered side shoots back by two thirds of their length
  • If the plant is heavily congested, cut out any really old branches from the base to promote new growth

For a worm’s eye guide to pruning

I’ve drawn up some info on pruning, and created a small, humorous guide to pruning. It’s not super-detailed, but shares some silly jokes and tips. Tips like ‘what to prune this winter’ and, perhaps more importantly, ‘what not to prune this winter’. I will be adding to it as I progress so keep coming back to take a look. Click here to go to the Worm’s eye view on pruning page.

Some plants like a good old prune at this time of the year. For other plants it could be the worse thing you could do. So, like me do your research before starting to hack away …

For example, there are 13 pruning groups in which your plants can be categorised, and pruned correctly. Clematis has its own 3 groups, get the pruning group wrong and goodbye clematis. To discover more about groups, and the plants in them, the RHS has a great summary here

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That’s enough from the worms, here’s some tip-top advise from the experts

RHS guide to pruning groups

Great direction, packed full of links and further reading from the RHS. A go to page for amateur pruners, like myself.

Year-round garden pruning guide

Great advice and full of quick and simple tips too, for example … don’t cut into tender plants or evergreens right now as their top growth provides insulation from penetrating cold.

Follow our blog for more pruning cartoons and helpful stuff like: training a lily beetle to sit.

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