Tips to Keep Your Vines in Line

Get some tips on how to keep control of climbing vines outside the home.

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All is not fine with the vines — that's the lament of the homeowners near Syracuse, N.Y., where this stuff is growing out of control. Despite the beauty, these creeping, crawling plants can cause expensive problems for a brick wall.

Climbing Ivy will cling to walls and dig into the brick and mortar, where there's moisture. If the mortar is weak, the vines can cause it to crumble. The same applies once they take hold of your home. But here are some tips that can keep your vines in line.

  • Prune at least twice a year to keep vines from growing out of control.
  • Scrape vines off brick walls with a hard-edge scraper, like a wide putty knife.
  • Pulling the ivy off could take pieces of mortar with it. Call a mason before you remove large areas of ivy from a brick wall. They can tell you whether the vines have damaged the wall and what steps to take if they have.

Vines can be beautiful and add elegance to your home. But it's best to grow the ivy on a trellis, a slight distance away from the house. That way, you wont spend your time trying to remove those pesky vines.

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