Ivy (Hedera helix)

Ivy is such a good late source of food for many insects and is a habitat in itself, the shelter it provides in its twisting vine like stems.

About this species

Common ivy is a popular ornamental, valued for its ability to thrive in shady places, provide excellent groundcover and cover unsightly walls, sheds and tree stumps. Many cultivars are available, including variegated forms that can be used to brighten shady depths of winter gardens.

Long collected for winter decorations, common ivy is associated with Christmas and frequently features in festive designs. It is also an important source of food and shelter for wildlife during winter.

Ivy is not a parasite, does not normally damage sound buildings or walls, and is rarely a threat to healthy trees. Regular trimming can prevent ivy becoming too heavy, a problem that can be exacerbated by the additional weight of rain and snow.


Linaria vulgaris – Common toadflax (Cavenham heath NR)


Common toadflax is a medium grassland perennial with greyish foliage. From June to October its spear of yellow snapdragon-like flowers with orange bulges, backed with long straight spurs, make Common toadflax an attractive and familiar plant of the British countryside.



After a holiday In the Outer Hebrides a few years ago I was so impressed by the wild flower Machair I scattered wild flower seeds on my lawn so far the Large pink clover and Birdsfoot Trefoil Has started to grow. I am still hoping the Ladies Bedstraw and Yellow rattle grow.