Ivy-leaved Toadflax Cymbalaria hepaticifolia

👤 Non-toxic to humans
🐾 Non-toxic to pets
🌸 Blooming
🍪 Not edible
‍🌱 Easy-care
Corsican toadflax


Cymbalaria hepaticifolia, commonly known as Ivy-leaved toadflax, exhibits a trail of delicate foliage and small, charming flowers. The leaves are reminiscent of a liver in shape, with a deep green hue and a glossy appearance, adding to the plant's ornamental value. These leaves form a dense mat that covers the ground and provides a lush, green carpet look to the surroundings. The flowers of Ivy-leaved toadflax are particularly striking. They bloom in a shade of violet to pale blue, with a pale throat and often display intricate patterning that entices onlookers. Each blossom has a distinctive spur, lending the flower an elegant and unique silhouette. These blooms are borne on slender stalks that arise amongst the foliage, adding specks of color against the green backdrop. The overall habit of Ivy-leaved toadflax is one of grace and intricacy. Its ability to spread and drape over surfaces gives it a softness that is often used to enhance the aesthetic of gardens and stone walls where it can naturally take hold and flourish. Despite its delicate look, Ivy-leaved toadflax is known to be quite hardy, capable of surviving in a variety of conditions, continuing to add beauty with both its foliage and blooms.

Plant Info
Common Problems

About this plant

  • memoNames

    • Family


    • Synonyms

      Ivy-leaved Toadflax, Kenilworth Ivy, Coliseum Ivy, Oxford Ivy, Mother Of Thousands

    • Common names

      Linaria hepaticifolia, Linaria cymbalaria, Antirrhinum hepaticifolium, Cymbalaria muralis subsp. hepaticifolia, Cymbalaria hepaticifolia subsp. dalmatica, Cymbalaria hepaticifolia subsp. pallida.

  • skullToxicity

    • To humans

      Ivy-leaved toadflax, scientifically known as Cymbalaria hepaticifolia, is not widely known for its toxicity to humans. There is limited information on the toxic properties of this plant specifically. However, as with many plants not commonly used for consumption, it is generally advisable to avoid ingesting it. While some sources suggest that it may not be highly toxic, any plant can potentially cause adverse reactions in certain individuals. Ingesting unknown plants or unidentified parts of a plant can result in symptoms like gastrointestinal discomfort, nausea, vomiting, or diarrhea. If there is suspicion of poisoning from ingesting ivy-leaved toadflax, it is important to seek medical advice promptly.

    • To pets

      Ivy-leaved toadflax, or Cymbalaria hepaticifolia, does not have a widespread reputation as a toxic plant to pets. However, like with humans, the toxicity of this specific plant can be unclear, and it may vary among different animals. Pets should be discouraged from ingesting any part of the plant, as it is always safer to prevent exposure to unknown potential toxins. Should a pet consume ivy-leaved toadflax, watch for signs of gastrointestinal upset such as vomiting, diarrhea, or loss of appetite, and consult a veterinarian if any concerning symptoms occur. It is crucial to keep an eye on pets and prevent them from eating plants that are not confirmed to be safe for consumption.

  • infoCharacteristics

    • Life cycle


    • Foliage type


    • Color of leaves


    • Flower color


    • Height

      0.1 feet (3 cm)

    • Spread

      1 feet (30 cm)

    • Plant type


    • Hardiness zones


    • Native area



  • money-bagGeneral Benefits

    • Ornamental Value: Cymbalaria hepaticifolia, also known as Kenilworth ivy, adds aesthetic value to gardens with its attractive foliage and small, lilac flowers.
    • Shade Tolerance: It grows well in shaded areas where other plants might not thrive, making it a good choice for garden spots that receive limited sunlight.
    • Ground Cover: Its creeping habit makes it an excellent ground cover, helping to reduce soil erosion and suppress weeds.
    • Low Maintenance: Kenilworth ivy requires minimal care once established, making it a good plant for low-maintenance landscapes.
    • Drought Resistance: It can withstand periods of drought once established, which can be beneficial in regions with water-use restrictions or low rainfall.
    • Soil Improvement: As a ground cover, it can help improve soil health by protecting it from the impact of heavy rains and preventing nutrient runoff.
    • Wildlife Attraction: The flowers of Kenilworth ivy may attract pollinators such as bees and butterflies, contributing to local biodiversity.
    • Architectural Use: Its trailing growth habit makes it suitable for cascading over walls, hanging baskets, or planters, providing visual interest in architectural settings.
    • Edging Plant: It can be used as an edging plant to define garden paths or flowerbed boundaries.

  • medicalMedical Properties

    This plant is not used for medical purposes.

  • windAir-purifying Qualities

    This plant is not specifically known for air purifying qualities.

  • leavesOther Uses

    • Cymbalaria hepaticifolia, commonly known as Ivy-leaved toadflax, can be used as a natural dye, providing various shades of yellow, green, or brown depending on the mordant used.
    • The plant's vigorous growth habit makes it useful for covering soil in potted plants, helping to retain moisture and suppress weeds.
    • Ivy-leaved toadflax is sometimes grown in green roofs, where its drought tolerance and ability to spread make it a low-maintenance option.
    • Because of its attractive foliage and flowers, Ivy-leaved toadflax is often used in hanging baskets and vertical gardens to create aesthetic green walls.
    • Gardeners use the plant to fill in cracks in walls or between paving stones, where it can establish itself and add charm to the hardscape elements.
    • Ivy-leaved toadflax is used in miniature gardens or fairy gardens due to its small size and delicate flowers, enhancing the whimsical theme of these tiny landscapes.
    • The plant is sometimes used in educational settings to demonstrate plant growth patterns and the ability of plants to thrive in challenging conditions.
    • Ivy-leaved toadflax's sprawling habit and ability to root from stem nodes can be utilized to prevent soil erosion on slopes or banks.
    • The flowers of Ivy-leaved toadflax can be used to decorate salads or desserts as an edible garnish, although they are not widely known for their taste.
    • Photographers and artists may use Ivy-leaved toadflax as a subject to practice macro photography or botanical illustration due to its intricate flower structure.

Interesting Facts

  • bedFeng Shui

    The Kenilworth Ivy is not used in Feng Shui practice.

  • aquariusZodiac Sign Compitability

    The Kenilworth Ivy is not used in astrology practice.

  • spiralPlant Symbolism

    • Unexpected Beauty - Cymbalaria hepaticifolia, commonly known as "Ivy-leaved toadflax," often grows in places where few other plants can, such as in cracks of walls or between paving stones, symbolizing the finding of beauty in unexpected places.
    • Survival and Persistence - This plant's ability to thrive in inhospitable environments makes it a symbol for survival and persistent determination against adversity.
    • Adaptability - Ivy-leaved toadflax's capability to adapt to various conditions represents flexibility and the ability to succeed in different situations.

Every 1-2 weeks
2500 - 10000 Lux
Every year
Spring to early summer
As needed
  • water dropWater

    The Kenilworth Ivy should be watered regularly to maintain evenly moist soil, especially during the growing season. Aim to water every 7 to 10 days, but this can vary depending on environmental conditions like humidity and temperature. When watering, provide enough water to soak the soil thoroughly, which in most cases will be around one gallon for an outdoor plant or a few ounces for smaller indoor pots. Always allow the top inch of soil to dry out slightly before watering again to prevent root rot.

  • sunLight

    Kenilworth Ivy thrives in partial shade to full shade, making it an excellent plant for those less sunny spots in your garden or home. It should be placed in a location where it can receive bright, indirect light, but be protected from the harsh rays of the midday sun. An ideal spot would be under the canopy of larger plants or trees, or near a north-facing window if grown indoors.

  • thermometerTemperature

    Kenilworth Ivy prefers a cool to moderate temperature range, with ideal growing temperatures between 50°F and 70°F. It can tolerate minimum temperatures down to 30°F, but it should be protected from frost. Maximum temperatures for the plant shouldn’t exceed 80°F, as excessive heat can stress the plant and affect its growth.

  • scissorsPruning

    Prune Kenilworth Ivy to maintain its shape and encourage a more compact growth habit. Light pruning can be done any time of year, but the best time for more extensive trimming is in early spring before new growth starts. Dead or damaged foliage should be removed as needed. Regular pruning once a year will help prevent the ivy from becoming too leggy or overgrown.

  • broomCleaning

    As needed

  • bambooSoil

    Kenilworth ivy prefers a well-draining potting mix with organic matter, a pH of 6.0 to 7.5. A blend of peat, loam, and perlite or sand works well to ensure adequate drainage and aeration.

  • plantRepotting

    Kenilworth ivy should be repotted every 1 to 2 years or when it has outgrown its current container to maintain healthy growth and prevent root-bound conditions.

  • water dropsHumidity & Misting

    Kenilworth ivy thrives in moderate to high humidity levels but is adaptable and can tolerate lower humidity typical of indoor environments.

  • pinSuitable locations

    • Indoor

      Grow Kenilworth ivy in bright indirect light and keep soil moist.

    • Outdoor

      Plant Kenilworth ivy in shade to partial sun; water when topsoil dries.

    • Hardiness zone

      5-9 USDA

  • circleLife cycle

    Cymbalaria hepaticifolia, commonly known as ivy-leaved toadflax, begins its life cycle as a seed that germinates in spring, ideally in a moist and partly shaded environment such as wall crevices or rocky ground. After germination, the seedling develops a small rosette of fleshy, ivy-like leaves and soon starts to produce trailing stems that can both spread along the substrate and climb nearby structures. Throughout spring and into summer, the plant flowers, displaying small, snapdragon-like purple to violet blossoms that are pollinated by insects, primarily bees. After pollination, it produces tiny, rounded fruits that release seeds, completing the reproductive cycle. The plant is capable of vegetative reproduction; stem fragments can take root at nodes and establish new plants. During winter, ivy-leaved toadflax can become dormant, especially in colder climates, but it will regrow from the roots in the following spring if conditions are favorable.

  • sproutPropogation

    • Propogation time

      Spring to early summer

    • Propogation: Cymbalaria hepaticifolia, commonly known as Ivy-leaved toadflax, propagates most effectively through seed. The ideal time to sow seeds is in the spring after the threat of frost has passed. To propagate, simply scatter the seeds over a moist, well-draining soil mix and lightly press them into the surface, as they need light to germinate. Keeping the soil consistently moist and at a temperature around 70°F (21°C) will encourage germination, which usually takes place within 2 to 4 weeks. Once seedlings have developed their first set of true leaves and are large enough to handle, they can be transplanted to their final location.