Grape Ivy Plants – How To Care For A Grape Ivy Houseplant

Grape ivy, or Cissus rhombifolia, is a member of the grape family and in form resembles other ornamental vines that share the name “ivy”. Consisting of about 350 species of subtropical to tropical species, Cissus rhombifolia is one of the most tolerant of indoor growing conditions. Grape ivy growing is most suited to use as an indoor hanging plant due to its native habitat in tropical Venezuela, where one will find grape ivy growing in a cascading or trailing profusion of vines up to 10 feet (3 m.) long.

Grape ivy in the home is tolerant of low light exposure, medium heat and low water requirements.

How to Care for Grape Ivy Houseplant

Caring for grape ivy is a lesson in less is more. These plants do not care for temperatures over 80 F. (27 C.), especially those into the 90s (32 C.). When growing grape ivy plants, maintaining temperatures between 68-82 F. (10-28 C.) is crucial in how to care for grape ivy houseplants. Temperatures over or under this range tend to repress the growth of the long runners of this beautiful hanging plant.

As mentioned above, when caring for grape ivy, a low light exposure is most advantageous, although grape ivy can tolerate bright to moderate light if kept sufficiently moist. Allow soil of grape ivy to dry slightly between waterings, taking care not to over irrigate.

Soil considerations when growing grape ivy are important as the root systems require excellent aeration. A potting mixture of peat combined with particles such as bark, perlite, Styrofoam and calcined clay, is the best medium in how to care for grape ivy houseplants. This potting mixture will aid in water retention and yet, allow for excellent drainage.

If utilizing an acidic peat when grape ivy growing, adjust the soil pH with an addition of dolomitic limestone (dolomite) to bring it into the range of 5.5-6.2.

Grape ivy plants are lovely hanging plants with rhombus shaped leaves (whence the name harkens) with long stems that are of a reddish hue on the underside. To maintain this color and flourishing growth, caring for grape ivy requires a consistent liquid fertilizer program. However, no amount of feeding of the grape ivy houseplant will encourage significant flowering. The blooms of this plant tend to be an innocuous green similar to the leaf color, blending into the foliage and rarely found on cultivated plants.

Pruning Grape Ivy Plants

Grape ivy growing allows for easy propagation of the plant from root cuttings obtained when pinching back the plant. Pinching back or pruning grape ivy plants also produces denser, healthier foliage. Trim ¼ inch (6.4 mm.) above the point of the leaf attachment and ¾ to 1 ¼ inch (2 to 3 cm.) below the node when pruning these plants.

After pruning grape ivy plants, the cutting will form a callus-like layer from whence the new roots will form. A rooting hormone may be applied to the cutting to encourage this root formation.

Grape Ivy Growing Problems

Grape ivy is susceptible to a few pests and problems such as leaf spot, mildew issues, mealybugs, spider mites, scales, and thrips. Most of these stem from the grower’s greenhouse and can be combated with an insecticide. Fungus, mildew and leaf drop may be the result of overly wet or dry conditions.

Hey all! Today I’m talking about a tiny little terrarium-sized plant I got about 2 years ago at a local nursery. I didn’t know exactly what it was when I got it—it was just group with she $1.99 terrarium/fairy garden plants and wasn’t labeled.

I gathered that it was some type of ivy. Seeing as I’ve not had great luck with ivy indoors in the past, I was hesitant to buy it. But the leaves were so pretty that I went ahead and took it home. And I’m glad I did, because that little guy grew into a large plant that has produced several propagated babies as well.

Girl's grape: plant description

Parthenocissus is not a wild relative of cultivated grape varieties it is a completely different species. Representatives of this species most often look like deciduous or evergreen vines. Their leaves are located on long petioles they can be palmate or trilobate. In the spring and summer, they are dark green in color, but in the beginning of autumn they begin to acquire a reddish hue, which looks very nice. Because this plant is often used to decorate gazebos and buildings.

Liana shoots can reach a length of up to 20 m. They quickly develop, fixing on a support with the help of antennae. Inflorescences of girl's grapes are corymbose, they are in the axils of leaves or opposite to them. Each flower in the inflorescence is bisexual, staminate. Ripe fruits are small dark berries.

Dead Leaves

Remove dead leaves at any time of year, whenever you notice them. Remove the dead foliage with a pair of sharp clippers. Grape ivy is an evergreen plant so it does not lose it leaves in winter, but old leaves die as new ones grow throughout the year. Leaving the dead leaves on the plant won't hurt its health, but it does make the plant look untidy.

Eulalia Palomo has been a professional writer since 2009. Prior to taking up writing full time she has worked as a landscape artist and organic gardener. Palomo holds a Bachelor of Arts in liberal studies from Boston University. She travels widely and has spent over six years living abroad.

How to Grow and Care for the Aggressive Grape Ivy Plant

Otherwise known as Boston ivy, grape ivy is a vigorous climber that is perfect for fences, trellises, walls, etc. Gardenerdy provides some guidelines for growing this plant.

Otherwise known as Boston ivy, grape ivy is a vigorous climber that is perfect for fences, trellises, walls, etc. Gardenerdy provides some guidelines for growing this plant.

Grape ivy tendrils have suction disks that help the plant cling to surfaces like walls and tree trunks.

As the name rightly suggests, grape ivy (Parthenocissus tricuspidata) is a woody vine that belongs to the grape family Vitaceae. Though the berries of this plant are not edible, the plant is grown for ornamental purposes. Grape ivy is not related to true ivy, and is native to Asian countries, like Japan, China, and Korea. It is also called Japanese creeper, Boston ivy, Japanese ivy, etc.

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The scientific name of the plant indicates its genus (Parthenocissus) and the specific epithet (tricuspidata). The term tricuspidata is derived from the shape of grape ivy leaves, which have three pointed lobes.

During spring, the plant produces red-colored shoots that turn green as they mature. The foliage remains glossy green throughout the summer. The color of the foliage changes to orange-red during fall. Though the plant retains its leaves during winter, it may shed if the temperature drops too low. A new cultivar named Parthenocissus tricuspidata purpurea has reddish-purple leaves throughout the year. Parthenocissus tricuspidata veitchii is another variety with smaller leaves that turn red during fall. The cultivar named ‘Beverly Brooks’ has bright red fall foliage and large leaves. However, the cultivars may not be as hardy as the original species.

During summer, the plant produces greenish-yellow flowers that are mostly inconspicuous. Small, blue-colored, round berries appear during fall. The berries develop in clusters on bright red stems. Though they are consumed by birds and small mammals, the berries are toxic for humans. The plant is said to be moderately toxic for cats and dogs too.

Grape Ivy Plant Care

Grape ivy is a hardy plant that can be grown without much care. It can be grown outdoors as well as indoors. Usually, grape ivy is grown on walls, trellises, fences, pergolas, etc. It can easily grow to a height of around 50 to 60 feet. The plant is best for USDA zones 4 to 8.

Soil and Sun

Grape ivy is tolerant to a wide range of growth conditions. However, they grow well in partial shade to full sun. Those growing in full sun develop bright fall color. Partial shade is preferred in warmer areas. Though it grows in different types of soil well-drained, loamy soil is preferred for grape ivy. The ideal pH level ranges between 6.1 to 7.5. Mulching is beneficial for retaining the moisture in the soil.


Grape ivy requires frequent watering, till it gets established. Once established, try to keep the soil slightly moist. This can be done by watering the plant once a week during spring and summer. Reduce the frequency of watering during winter and fall. Avoid over-watering, it can cause root rot. In case of a very hot summer, water the plant as and when the soil gets dry. Watering is not a must for established plants.


Being hardy and self-reliant, the grape ivy plant does not require frequent feeding. Apply a small amount of all-purpose fertilizer once a year during spring. Follow the instructions of the manufacturer regarding the dosage and method of application. Water thoroughly before and after application of fertilizer. Avoid feeding the plant if it grows too fast and is getting invasive.


If you want to grow the plant as a climber, it must have proper support. Grape ivy needs a surface to attach its tendrils. Tree trunks, walls made of rocks, bricks, wood, etc., are ideal for growing this plant. Wooden walls may develop mold and get damaged in the long run. Avoid growing grape ivy on painted walls as the suckers will damage the paint. The same applies to walls clad with siding. Grape ivy is ideal as a wall cover if you are looking for a permanent fixture, because removal of established plants can get difficult.


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With proper growth conditions, grape ivy grows really fast. It can cover walls and fences within no time. So, pruning is highly necessary to check its unrestrained and aggressive growth. You can remove the new shoots as and when they develop, especially during spring. Hard pruning during winter is good for controlling the growth of the plant. Apart from that, remove diseased and damaged stems. Remove new plants that grow from fallen berries and stem cuttings.


The easiest way to propagate grape ivy is to use stem cuttings. Try to get cuttings with a length of 4 to 5 inches. All you need to do is to remove the leaves near the cut end. Dip that end in rooting hormone and plant it in a container filled with soilless potting mix. It takes around two weeks for the cutting to develop roots and new leaves. You can transplant it in a pot or in the ground. Another method is to collect the seeds from ripe berries and grow them into new plants during fall. Plant grape ivy saplings at a distance of around 10 feet.

Pests and Diseases

Grape ivy is prone to powdery mildew, downy mildew, canker, leaf spots, etc. They are also get affected by pests like beetles, scales, aphids, caterpillars, and many other insects. Spraying soap solution on the foliage may prove effective for aphids, Japanese beetles, leafhoppers, mites, and scales. For eliminating caterpillars, spray Bacillus thuringiensis on the foliage. They will die within a few days of ingesting these bacteria. Application of sulfur spray may prove beneficial for countering fungal diseases. Consult a horticulturist or the local garden center for proper guidance relating to control of pests and diseases in grape ivy.

In short, grape ivy is a hardy plant that can be grown easily. However, it may turn aggressive and cover a whole area in a very short span of time. When grown as a wall cover, grape ivy can cover the whole building including the windows and doors. So, prune them properly at regular intervals. If you want to remove an established grape ivy plant from the wall, don’t pull out the vines. One method is to apply a herbicide like glyphosate during late summer. The plant will die within a week or two. Another method is to remove the trailers as well as the leaves and spray white vinegar.

Repot annually in the spring. If you’re propagating, take cuttings at the same time. Because these are vines, plant for upright growth and include a stake or trellis in the pot. It’s also a good idea to use the heaviest pot practical to reduce the risk of the plant tipping over.

There are several Cissus species grown indoors, including:

  • C. rhombifolia. This plant is the common grape ivy vine. It features tripartite, long-stemmed leaves and fuzzy brown branches. The new growth is fuzzy but becomes smooth as it grows. These can be maintained at around 20 inches tall with pruning.
  • C. antarcatica. Known as the kangaroo vine, these have oval, saw-toothed leaves and resemble the C. rhombifolia, except it’s coarser in texture.
  • C. discolor. Perhaps the most beautiful of the commonly grown Cissues plants, this vine offers variegated leaves shaped like hearts, somewhat reminiscent of the begonia plant. These are warm-room plants that need to maintained at a high temperature and humidity and may not be suitable for most homes.

Plant Finder Tool

An attractive indoor ivy with foliage that resemble grape leaves low maintenance, and thrives well in low light allow soil to dry before re-watering

Grape Ivy's attractive glossy pointy compound leaves remain forest green in color throughout the year. The flowers are not ornamentally significant.

This is an herbaceous evergreen houseplant with a spreading, ground-hugging habit of growth. This plant can be pruned at any time to keep it looking its best.

When grown indoors, Grape Ivy can be expected to grow to be about 4 feet tall at maturity, with a spread of 24 inches. It grows at a slow rate, and under ideal conditions can be expected to live for approximately 10 years. This houseplant performs well in both bright or indirect sunlight and strong artificial light, and can therefore be situated in almost any well-lit room or location. It is very adaptable to both dry and moist soil, but will not tolerate any standing water. The surface of the soil shouldn't be allowed to dry out completely, and so you should expect to water this plant once and possibly even twice each week. Be aware that your particular watering schedule may vary depending on its location in the room, the pot size, plant size and other conditions if in doubt, ask one of our experts in the store for advice. It is not particular as to soil pH, but grows best in rich soil. Contact the store for specific recommendations on pre-mixed potting soil for this plant.

There are many factors that will affect the ultimate height, spread and overall performance of a plant when grown indoors among them, the size of the pot it's growing in, the amount of light it receives, watering frequency, the pruning regimen and repotting schedule. Use the information described here as a guideline only individual performance can and will vary. Please contact the store to speak with one of our experts if you are interested in further details concerning recommendations on pot size, watering, pruning, repotting, etc.


Disclaimer - This Plant Finder tool is an online resource representing many of the varieties that we carry over the course of the season, and is intended for informational purposes only. Inventory varies seasonally, so we cannot guarantee that every plant will be in stock at all times - please contact the store directly for current availability. It does not include our entire selection of plants, so be sure to visit our store to see varieties that may not be represented on this list.

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Watch the video: How to Grow Ivy Indoors Successfully

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