Plant of the Week – Parthenocissus tricuspidata

Of course your garden shouldn’t just be about the weeds and the hard work.  What about the plants we love and those that bring joy and wonder to your outdoor spaces?

To balance out the nasties, Davidson Design Studio shares with you our plant favorites and those that provide excellent solutions for your garden.

Plant of the Week – Parthenocissus tricuspidata, Boston Ivy

Author: Amy Davidson

Part of the grape family, Boston Ivy (Parthenocissus tricuspidata) is native to eastern Asia.  This deciduous woody vine can grow to 30 metres if given a suitable support.  The creeper attaches itself through numerous small branched tendrils tipped with sticky discs.


The simple 3 lobed leaves range from 5 to 22cms across, the flowers are green and inconspicuous while the fruit is a small dark blue grape 0.5cm in diameter.


This plant is often grown to cover the facades of masonry buildings and can significantly reduce cooling costs in summer.  The creeper secretes calcium carbonate into the little discs which allows it to attach to walls and hold its own weight.


Boston Ivy rarely does damage to the masonry it attaches itself to – damage can be done if the plant is ripped from a wall (if you are looking to remove Boston Ivy, it is best to sever the vine at the base first and wait until the adhesive pads have deteriorated before pulling it from a wall).


The autumn display this plant puts on is spectacular and if you are looking to cool a western facing wall in your home during summer, you can’t look past this gem.

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