My ivy died! What else would be good for the top of my hutch?

bellapietra(z6 PA)March 24, 2013

I seem to have no luck with ivy on the top of my hutch in my kitchen area. It looks great for a while but within a year or so starts to die and turn brown! I don't overwater or underwater as far as I know. My kitchen is cool in the winter and air conditioned when the weather turns hot so heat is not the issue.

Does anyone have any suggestions for plants that are pretty and sort of drapy and will survive? My kitchen is bright and the plants up there get a few hours of direct sun in the morning. It's a slanted high ceiling so there is about five feet to the ceiling.

Any suggestions would be appreciated!

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auron22(6b OH)

If you absolutely love ivy, i would explore some more as to why it is dying. If you really just want to give up on ivy though, there are plenty of other plants that can work.
I'm not to knowledgable if they will like the location you have for them, but i'll list a few that i "think" will work.

Pothos ; there are several varieties with interesting colors

Hoya compacta ; there is a pic somewhere on this website with a hoya compacta that has drooped down like 7 feet. There are also other hoya's that can drape.

Epiphyllum ; Also known as orchid cactus. A hybrid recommended, they bloom for much longer periods. I will supply a picture that i do not own, flowers are to die for and can boast a scent. This is not christmas/easter cactus.

Those are just my top 3 suggestions, and i'm pretty sure they will all like that spot.

    Bookmark   March 24, 2013 at 1:45PM
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Tuckamore

Hello,

I have NO luck with ivy either...I seem to be able to grow everything else tho lol

Hanging/draping plants:

Tradescantia zebrina (wandering jew)

Epipremnum aureum

Epipremnum aureum "neon"

hanging/climbing philodendron

These are some good choices, I have all of these and they are beautiful plants, and they grow very quickly. You can also get different varieties of these plants. I am not great with common names as there are so many but I hope this helps!

Tuck

    Bookmark   March 24, 2013 at 1:45PM
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birdsnblooms

Bella. Ivy is very, very difficult when grown indoors. For one, they're spider mite magnets.
Most likely, air, nearest the ceiling is dry. Dry, stuffy air invites mites. So, don't feel you did something wrong.

IMO, Pothos are the hardiest plants. They thrive in the poorest conditions, various light, and adapt to dry air.
Pothos does well in water, too.

Philodendron scandens, 'Heart-Shape' foliage is next in line. Although, Philodendrons require a certain amount of humidity, with minimal care, a Philo should do well on your hutch.

I assume you want a hanging plant?? Toni

    Bookmark   March 24, 2013 at 1:49PM
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birdsnblooms

Auron...Your Easter Cactus is beautiful. Toni

    Bookmark   March 24, 2013 at 1:51PM
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teengardener1888(NY Albany 5a)

Ivies are difficult only because of the mites. They would be easier of it wasnt for the bugs

    Bookmark   March 24, 2013 at 2:17PM
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bellapietra(z6 PA)

Thanks Tuck, Auron22, Toni, Teengardener1888,

So many good suggestions!

Wandering Jew, and Pothos I was aware of and I am going to research all the others you have suggested.

That Orchid Cactus is a stunner. I will look for the Hoyas as well.

Thanks again!

    Bookmark   March 24, 2013 at 6:04PM
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wndy_gardenweb(USDA z4b)

I concur with what the others have said, and second the suggestions for heart leaf philodendron (philodendron scandens) and pothos (epipremnum aureum). :-)

    Bookmark   March 24, 2013 at 10:56PM
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bellapietra(z6 PA)

Thanks, Wndy!

    Bookmark   March 25, 2013 at 8:36AM
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val1(z4 UT)

My daughter has a beautiful Scindapsus pictus 'Argyraeus'. I have seen it called a satin pothos or silver philodendron. It grows quickly and is stunning. She has been asked for cuttings many times. Best of all, it is very easy to keep alive. Pothos 'Pearls and Jade' is also nice.

    Bookmark   March 25, 2013 at 9:33AM
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Tiffany, purpleinopp GardenWeb, Z8b Opp, AL

Maranta would be lovely cascading down from that spot. I love the idea of one of the jungle cacti - Easter, TG, Christmas cacti. For a look similar to ivy, you might like Ceropegia if you can find some.

With that much height, I would probably do a combo-pot with something tall, multiple dangling entities. Does that idea appeal to you?

Something like Cordyline fruticosa, that can be pruned if/when a piece gets too tall. A parlor palm grows so slow, it could take forever to get too tall. A Sans that tops out lower than 5 ft. might be striking.

I would warn against heart-leaf Philo because the aerial roots can damage the paint on the wall, finish on any wood trim. They will also adhere to metal, painted metal.

In my mind, there's already more than 1 pot up there... you really wanted enabling, right?

    Bookmark   March 25, 2013 at 10:31AM
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bellapietra(z6 PA)

val1 and purpleinopp,

Thanks for the helpful suggestions!

Yes I liked it when I had several of the same type of ivy up there even though it was a bit safe. They draped over and looked lovely.

But now I think a variety of plants with different heights and textures will be much more interesting. I will be daring. Can't wait to get started!

    Bookmark   March 25, 2013 at 5:28PM
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lorrr

My suggestion would be Scindapsus pictus 'Argyraeus' (satin pothos). I have several (six) in my home and a few at school in my classroom (three). The foliage is very attractive and it is easy to grow. I also have a few pothos 'Pearls and Jade' in my home, however for me they are a bit more challenging in regards to watering. Either of these plants would look very attractive on the top of your hutch. Good luck with your decision!

Lorrr

    Bookmark   March 25, 2013 at 9:35PM
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bellapietra(z6 PA)

Thanks, Lorrr,

I like the Satin Pothos. Lovely contrast on the leaves. I'm going to look for that at my garden center.

Pretty and sturdy sounds great to me!

    Bookmark   March 26, 2013 at 6:55PM
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bellapietra(z6 PA)

Thanks, Lorrr,

I like the Satin Pothos. Lovely contrast on the leaves. I'm going to look for that at my garden center.

Pretty and sturdy sounds great to me!

    Bookmark   March 26, 2013 at 6:56PM
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lorrr

Hi Bellapietra,

I totally forgot about another favorite plant of mine; pothos brazil. I thought of you today as I bought two beautiful plants of the said named for the area outside my classroom! Yikes...I truly have a sickness. My home is full (and I mean full) of plants and my classroom and activity area outside my classroom has large windows with great windowsills, sooooooo... why not fill those areas with plants to purify the air for my wonderful students? ( I have every excuse in the book to buy more plants.) Seriously though, my classroom is so homey and inviting and the kids love helping me care for them. Good luck with your search and decision.

    Bookmark   March 26, 2013 at 7:56PM
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birdsnblooms

Lorrr, what grade do you teach?

Your students must love you. :)

Seems we 'all' have the best, 'in our minds,' most logical, excuses when it comes to adding more plants. One more plant...plants clean the air...and so on, and so on.

You have quite a few options to choose from now. Very good advice given to you.
Warning. Don't buy each plant suggested. Not all at once, anyway.

Toni

    Bookmark   March 27, 2013 at 12:04PM
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lorrr

Hee, hee Toni. You are funny. The way I look at my plant addiction is... I don't drink, smoke or do drugs...but I do plants.

I teach 6th grade English and Social Studies.

Lorrr

    Bookmark   March 27, 2013 at 7:44PM
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buyorsell888(Zone 8 Portland OR)

In addition to the suggestions already given I'll add grape ivy. Cissus rhombifolia.

English ivy, Hedera helix is very difficult as a houseplant. It is a noxious weed outdoors here in the Pacific Northwest but indoors it gets spider mites in minutes....

    Bookmark   March 27, 2013 at 9:24PM
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bellapietra(z6 PA)

Thanks, buyorsell888,

No more Hedera ivy for me! So nice at first but then grief!

(My son worked in Seattle for a while, he liked it.;)

Grape ivy looks nice.

Ok, it!s off to the garden center!

    Bookmark   March 28, 2013 at 6:50PM
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larry_b(Zone5/CO)

If you like grape vine ivy you might also like its cousin the oak vine ivy.

Not sure if anyone suggested Syngonium podophyllum or arrowhead plant. Or the purple passion plant. Can't remember the Latin name, but it's got purple leaves and they're very fuzzy. It vines after it gets a little older.

As Purple has suggested ceropegia woodii would be a great plant for your hutch.

Since there is 5 feet above your hutch have you thought of having anything up there besides a vining plant? Say a parlor palm for instance?

Larry

    Bookmark   March 29, 2013 at 8:34PM
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bellapietra(z6 PA)

Hi, Larry-b,

Happy Easter!

Thanks for the suggestions. I will look at all of them. I was worried if I put something too tall up there it might look looming but parlor palm sure is pretty and might fill the space better maybe paired with lower plants.

Ellen

    Bookmark   March 31, 2013 at 12:16PM
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larry_b(Zone5/CO)

Hi Ellen,

Happy Easter to you too!

I am including a photo of one of my plant stands with a parlor palm on the top shelf. It if just under the peak of our vaulted ceiling. There is around 5 feet of space above the top of the plant stand.

    Bookmark   March 31, 2013 at 12:47PM
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bellapietra(z6 PA)

Hi, Larry_b,

Thanks! That parlor palm does look good there.

It's not too vertical and spreads out nicely. Your other little guys are so pretty on the shelves below!

Ellen

    Bookmark   April 1, 2013 at 4:33PM
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birdsnblooms

Bella. I forgot Senecio macroglossus variegated, common name, Rubber Ivy.

If you like the look of Ivy, without the fuss, try Senecio, Rubber Ivy.
Choices are green or variegated. I prefer variegated.

Leaves are thicker than Hederas, and doesn't need humidity. Nor are they mite magnets.

I don't have a photo, but Rubber Ivy can be found by Googling.

Lorrr....3 excellent reasons to add more plants. :)

    Bookmark   April 2, 2013 at 1:48PM
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bellapietra(z6 PA)

Hi, Hopefulauthor and everyone,

Hopefulauthor, thanks! The rubber ivy is very pretty and would look good on the top of the hutch when my remaining Hedera goes toes up!

All,

Here is a pic of my hutch after my trip to the garden store aided by your suggestions!

Thanks again, it's been fun and I look forward to more education on this great site.

    Bookmark   April 3, 2013 at 2:48PM
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birdsnblooms

Bella...oh, your hutch is absolutely gorgeous!
I love your knick-knacks, too..So pretty.
All are lovely, but my favorites are the angel, cups, and white bird.
If you rub the bllue container, top shelf, will a genie pop out? :)

Is the Ivy on the end the plant you said is dying? It looks very healthy to me.

My eyesight isn't the best, but looks like you adopted, left to right, Wandering Jew??, Dracaena, and Parlour Palm.
Sorry, don't feel like checking botanical names, lol. Toni

    Bookmark   April 3, 2013 at 3:25PM
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bellapietra(z6 PA)

Hi, Toni,

Thanks for the kind words! No genie has popped out as yet!

That ivy actually was hanging in a window elsewhere in the kitchen.

The four Hedera I had up there are deceased. Will he start to languish up there now? I hope not!

I have come home also with several other plants for the house, it's like eating peanuts but a lot more expensive. Fun figuring where they will do best in the house, though I guess I should have thought of that first.

Happy Spring! But it's still too cold here in PA.

Ellen

    Bookmark   April 3, 2013 at 6:23PM
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larry_b(Zone5/CO)

Hi Ellen,

Thank you for the kind words about my plant stand!

Your hutch looks great! The choice of plants and the way you'll have arranged them looks wonderful! Good job!

Yep, I know what that's like a with plants. They are a little bit like peanuts or potato chips. lol My wife's and my favorite plant joke is that putting both of us in a plant store is like putting two junkies in a crack house. No self control there. lol

Larry

    Bookmark   April 3, 2013 at 7:31PM
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