Home Gardening Guide Why Is My English Ivy Dying? (Causes and Treatment)

Why Is My English Ivy Dying? (Causes and Treatment)

by gardeningit
Why Is My English Ivy Dying

English Ivy is an evergreen perennial vine native to Eurasia. It has arrow-shaped, dull-green, lobed leaves that have a smooth texture. It is grown abundantly as a houseplant for its rapidly-growing foliage that quickly covers the available space. As it can grow 80 feet long branches, it can act as a ground cover or a cover for walls and trellis. It is a low-maintenance plant, but beginners can have a tough time caring for it. If you do not provide it with proper care, you can end up with a dead Ivy in just some days. This article will help you if your plant appears dull and lifeless and you are wondering: why is my English Ivy dying?

Reason Behind English Ivy Dying

If English Ivy is over-fertilized or not watered properly, it can die within days. A dying English Ivy can also mean the plant was placed incorrectly or with unsuitable growing conditions. Pests can also be a likely reason for your English Ivy dying.

If your English Ivy is getting dull day by day due to any of the above causes, it is possible to reverse the effect and save the plant from dying. You just have to learn what needs to be done for treating these causes.

English Ivy Dying Indoors

For an English Ivy dying indoors, you should regulate sunlight exposure and humidity to revive its original, healthy form. If you provide proper sunlight and high humidity to your Ivy plant, its dying leaves will become green and fresh again.


Sunlight is food for plants. If a plant does not receive proper sunlight exposure, its leaves start to lose their color, and its foliage becomes nearer to death.

English Ivy needs full shade to partial sunlight to grow properly. Suppose your Ivy is growing slower than usual, and its leaves are losing their color. In that case, it means poor sunlight is the main reason for your English Ivy dying. In this case, you should move your plant to a brighter spot.


English Ivy needs 40% relative humidity to thrive; it cannot grow in drier environments. If the humidity is kept below 40% indoors, English ivy starts dying.

Discoloration and foliage drooping indicate that the environment is too drier for the Ivy plant to grow. It needs moisture in the air to transpire. If there is not enough moisture in its surroundings, its leaves lose water and become flaccid. This plant can die due to excessive water loss.

You should mist your Ivy plant daily to provide it with the necessary amount of moisture. You can also place its pot over a pebble tray.

English Ivy Dying Outdoors

Full sun, intense heat, or pests could be the reasons for your English Ivy dying outdoors. This plant is not tolerant of direct sun or high temperatures, so you should not grow it in a place where its foliage can get exposed to full sun. Here is how you can save your English Ivy dying outdoors.

Protect It From Full Sun

If your English Ivy is dying and has scorched leaves, it means it is getting too much sun. Use a shade cloth to protect your Ivy Plant from direct sun. It would be best if you move this plant indoors for some time. Its leaves will heal when away from the full sun. Place its pot near a north-facing window to avoid getting too much bright sunlight, further damaging the foliage.

Protect It From Heat

The ideal temperature range for this Ivy is 10°C – 18°C. If the temperature rises above this range in summer, English Ivy starts dying. To protect it from the heat and to revive your dying Ivy, increase the watering frequency. It should be watered in the morning so that its roots fully absorb the water before it is evaporated in the afternoon.

You should also mist your Ivy often as misting will keep its foliage cool and hydrated.

Get Rid of the Pests

Pests are harmful creatures. English Ivy is prone to mealybugs, spider mites, scales and aphids that can quickly kill it. These pests suck sap and other fluids from the foliage and weaken the Ivy over time. Due to lesser fluids, the leaves appear dry and lifeless. If you do not get rid of the pests, your plant will die from fluid loss.

These are the common signs of pest infestation:

  1. Web-like structures between leaves.
  2. Red spots.
  3. Honeydew or sugary, white droplets.
  4. White fuzzy substance.
  5. Black, sooty substance.

You can get rid of the pests by spraying the foliage with diluted insecticidal soap or neem oil. Another way is to wipe the foliage with rubbing alcohol.

Common Factors

Overwatering, poor water quality and over-fertilization are three common factors that can be the reason for your English Ivy dying either indoors or outdoors.


If your Ivy has brown and soft leaves, it means you have been overwatering it. English Ivy should be watered after its topsoil is dry. If its soil is not allowed to dry between waterings, it can get root rot. Root rot can kill your Ivy faster than any other disease. You should water your Ivy plant every 5 to 7 days and not before.

To revive your overwatered Ivy, let it dry for some days and do not overwater. Also, check for root rot. If it has root rot, trim all the infected branches and wash the healthy ones. It would be best if you re-pot the plant and change its soil.

Water Quality

If the leaves of your English Ivy have dry and crisp edges, it means you are using the wrong water type. Tap water contains many minerals harmful to Ivy plants, such as chloride, fluoride, calcium, and magnesium. When you water your Ivy with tap water, these minerals build up in its soil. Mineral build-up hinders the absorption of essential nutrients. So, using tap water also leads to nutrient deficiency.

You should leave tap water overnight so that chlorine in it evaporates and other minerals sediment down. However, it would be best if you use distilled water for your English Ivy.


Brown leaves on the edges also indicate that your plant is receiving too much fertilizer. You can distinguish mineral deficiency from nutrient deficiency by the color of the blades. Over-fertilization leads to yellow leaves with brown edges, but mineralization causes brown edges only.

To protect your English Ivy dying from over-fertilization, leach the soil and remove the visible nutrients from the surface. After leaching the ground, do not fertilize your plant for another month.

English Ivy should be fertilized just once a month with nutrient-rich fertilizer.

Final Thoughts

English Ivy is an aesthetically pleasing vine, which increases the livability factor wherever it is grown. It is easy to care for and maintain, but minor mistakes in its care routine can kill it faster than you can imagine.

So if you are asking yourself, why is my English Ivy dying? Find out what you are doing wrong with its care routine. It can be due to overwatering, too much fertilizer, improper sunlight exposure, pest infestation or low humidity. Now that you know how to treat each of the above problems, you can quickly save and revive your dying English Ivy.

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