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Ivy in oak tree. Harmful?

Posted by lou_violette 8a (My Page) on
Tue, Apr 3, 07 at 23:14

I have a 40+ year old live oak that has ivy growing up its trunk and branches. I have been told both that the ivy will not harm the tree and that it will eventually kill it. Last year I cut some of the vines. Some of the small ones died and others kept growing, so apparently they have grown into the tree and are receiving nourishment from it.
I'd like to know if this will harm the tree and, if so, what can I do to remove it without destroying the ive bed under the tree and damaging the tree itself. Is there anything I can rub on the leaves, or will this poison the tree since the roots have grown into the bark? Help please!
Thank you!

Follow-Up Postings:

RE: Ivy in oak tree. Harmful?

Can you afford to get a local arborist to get up in there and get rid of all the suckers - basically get rid of the ivy for good? While it might or might not do long term damage, it's going to look pretty awful eventually.

RE: Ivy in oak tree. Harmful?

Ivy doesn't take anything from the tree, other than a little bit of sunlight. It is only using the tree as a parking space. If there is any still growing on the tree, it means you missed a stem coming up from the ground, its roots are in the soil, not the tree.

What to do with ivy depends on where you are, which you haven't stated (though mention of live oak suggests USA). In Europe and Asia, ivy is a desirable native species, valuable for wildlife; in North America it is introduced, and listed as an invasive species. So if that's where you are, you should do the best you can to remove it.


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