English Ivy Information
English ivy is a plant belonging to the family Rosaceae. It belongs to the same genus as the common garden houseplant, Rosa (the rose). English ivy is native to Europe, but it was introduced into North America during colonial times. Today it grows naturally throughout most of the United States and Canada. It is also found in some other countries such as Australia and New Zealand.
The name “ivy” comes from the Latin word īvus meaning thorn or branch. English ivy is one of the most common plants in gardens, although it does not grow well in very dry conditions. It prefers moist soil with good drainage. Because of its adaptability, English ivy can survive almost anywhere. However, it will usually do better if grown near water sources and around buildings where moisture levels are high.
English ivy is a member of the mint family, which includes mints like spearmint and spearmint oil. Its leaves are smooth and oval shaped. They have three leaflets each arranged in a V shape. Leaves may be greenish yellow, orange, red or purple depending on the variety. The flowers are white to pinkish-white and appear at the tips of leaflets.
These flowers are very small and do not have petals. Instead they have four tiny sepals partially fused together to form a little cup (called a calyx).
English ivy can reproduce both sexually and asexual. It spreads via its seeds, which are contained in berries that ripen in the autumn. The berries are eaten by birds and scattered in their droppings. It can also spread through ground rhizomes (horizontal stems) that send up new plants. If you have a patch of English ivy in your yard, it is probably made up of many genetically identical plants that all reproduced from a single parent.
English ivy has several uses. It has been used as a folk remedy for various medical conditions including asthma and headaches. No evidence shows that it is effective for this purpose. It has also been used as a food crop in some places such as eastern Asia. The berries and leaves can be eaten cooked or raw.
English ivy is sometimes used in landscaping as it is very adaptable and can quickly cover large areas. It can be toxic to dogs and cats if they eat it, especially if they also eat grass at the same time. This is because the lawn contains a chemical that does not agree with them. Dogs and cats that vomit after eating English ivy may have green plant material in their vomit. Ingesting large amounts can cause kidney failure.
However, it is not considered toxic to humans.
English ivy is sometimes used as a recreational drug. Ingestion of the leaves or berries can sometimes produce a mild “high” of short duration. Eating too much can cause diarrhea.
English ivy contains several compounds that affect the heart and blood vessels in different ways. These compounds have been shown to prevent blood clotting and increase bleeding when taken internally. They have also been shown to be toxic to the liver and some are carcinogenic (cancer causing). These compounds are most concentrated in the berries.
English ivy is sometimes used as a filler in illegal drugs such as ecstasy.
English ivy can be fatal if eaten, especially by children. If you think someone has ingested English ivy berries or leaves, seek medical attention immediately.
English ivy has been a favorite of gardeners and landscapers for many years. It is easy to grow and provides quick privacy. Despite its popularity, it can be fatal if ingested by either humans or animals.
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Sources & references used in this article:
… plant’and IVY are M, even when used to refer to individual plants grown in separate pots (You have a lot of tarragon/* tarragons/ivy/* ivies growing those pots). 3 … by SS Fest, C Chad, AM Zwicky – 2001 – stanford.edu
The employment of English: Theory, jobs, and the future of literary studies by M Bérubé, M Bérubé – 1998 – books.google.com
No Ivies, Oxbridge, or grandes écoles: Constructing distinctions in university choice by J Baker – British Journal of Sociology of Education, 2014 – Taylor & Francis