‘Homemade spray’ that ‘works the same as weed killer’ to eliminate ivy

Gardening: How to remove ivy from brickwork and trees

English ivy is moderately attractive and takes over an area, thereby serving as an effective ground cover to suppress weed growth. However, this effectiveness is a double-edged sword as it is an invasive plant. Ivy can become a terror for homeowners, growing rapidly and climbing up walls up to 30 metres. Ivy can not only damage property, but some types can cause allergic reactions. English ivy grows so rapidly that some regard it as a weed and wish to kill it to keep it from becoming a nuisance in gardens.

Taking to the Mrs Hinch Gardening Tips Facebook page, Wendy Davies asked: “Can anyone advise me on the best way to get rid of ivy consuming my garden?”

While gardeners can hire a professional if they want to get rid of ivy, this can often be costly.

Instead, gardening enthusiasts have shared how households can get rid of ivy in their gardens using some kitchen staples.

The majority claimed that a combination of salt and white vinegar can effectively remove ivy.

Maria Saunders said: “I kill everything off with a homemade salt spray I make. Combine salt with white vinegar and spray it on the roots, if it doesn’t work I will be very surprised. For me, it works better than most weed killers I’ve tried.

“Keep on top of it, you will get rid of it, once killed off it will not grow back, same with any weeds. I have surprised many people with the salt story.”

Ann Russell commented: “Salt and vinegar in a spray bottle, or sprayer for large areas, no harsh chemicals and works the same. My garden was overcome with it after last year’s wet weather.”

Jean Stevens wrote: “White vinegar is more acidic than brown malt vinegar. Spray the plant with white vinegar making sure you don’t get it on any of your other plants. White vinegar also kills weeds.”

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Chris Harris said: “Salt used for clearing drives in winter. Put a load around the roots and water occasionally. 

“Ivy searches for water and hates the salt. I did it years ago to an ivy hedge. It took a few months but slowly died off.”

Abi Roper replied: “Like lots of people said here, steer away from weed killer. White vinegar is a good option, but also, when you get to the bottom of the plant and you cut the main stem(s).

“Douse them in boiling water and then pour lots of salt on them. That should kill it back. It will take time though, that pesky stuff will just pop up.”

Christine Stilman said: “Pull up as much as you can and then use white vinegar and salt on the roots. My garden was heaving with it when I moved in and there’s not a spot left now.”

Not just a good fish and chips condiment, salt and vinegar are actually proved to be a toxic deterrent for this hardy evergreen.

White vinegar contains acetic acid, which can be found in many weed killers, and salt is a great ingredient to dehydrate plants.

The combination of vinegar and salt develops a powerful remedy to rid your garden of unwanted weeds.

What’s more, this mixture shouldn’t have any long-term effects on the soil once the plant has gone.

Purdue University said: “Even though vinegar is an acid, it breaks down quickly in the soil and, therefore, is not likely to accumulate enough to affect soil pH for more than a few days.”

Salt, however, can remain in the soil and prevent future plant growth if used in high concentrations.

So, it’s important to stick to that one tablespoon of salt when creating the solution.

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