Kenilworth Ivy Cymbalaria muralis

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

ABOUT

Cymbalaria muralis, commonly known as ivy-leaved toadflax, is a charming and delicate-looking plant characterized by small, ivy-like leaves that are rounded and often have a slightly lobed or heart-shaped appearance. These lush green leaves grow on slender, trailing stems that can attach themselves to surfaces, making the plant excellent for growing on walls or in rock crevices. The flowers of the ivy-leaved toadflax are quite distinctive and attractive, blooming from late spring to early autumn. They are small and have a snapdragon-like shape, usually violet to purple in color with delicate veins and a yellow throat, which gives them a striking appearance against the foliage. After pollination, the flowers are known for the unique behavior of turning to face the wall or crevice the plant is growing on, so that the seeds can be deposited in suitable growing spots. The visual appeal of ivy-leaved toadflax is enhanced by its ability to form cascading mats of foliage and flowers, often creating a picturesque scene. Although it is not a large plant, it has a vigorous growth habit that allows it to cover surfaces and fill in areas with its ornate leaves and eye-catching blooms. Its somewhat whimsical growth pattern and the propensity to pop up in unexpected places make it a plant that's full of character and well-suited for adding a touch of nature to urban settings, old walls, and garden nooks.

Plant Info
Care
Common Problems

About this plant

  • memoNames

    • Family

      Plantaginaceae

    • Synonyms

      Ivy-Leaved Toadflax, Kenilworth Ivy, Coliseum Ivy, Oxford Ivy, Mother Of Thousands, Pennywort, Wandering Sailor

    • Common names

      Antirrhinum cymbalaria, Cymbalaria cymbalaria, Cymbalaria hepaticifolia, Cymbalaria muralis var. muralis, Cymbalaria muralis subsp. muralis, Linaria cymbalaria.

  • skullToxicity

    • To humans

      Kenilworth ivy (Cymbalaria muralis) is not commonly known to be toxic to humans. There is limited information available on its toxicity; however, it is always advisable to avoid ingestion of any plant material that is not known to be safe to eat. If you suspect poisoning from any plant, seek medical attention immediately.

    • To pets

      Kenilworth ivy is not commonly listed as a toxic plant to pets such as dogs and cats. However, individual animals may have different sensitivities and it is generally recommended to prevent pets from eating plants not intended for consumption. If you observe any unusual symptoms after your pet has ingested this plant, contact your veterinarian for advice.

  • infoCharacteristics

    • Life cycle

      Perennials

    • Foliage type

      Evergreen

    • Color of leaves

      Green

    • Flower color

      Purple

    • Height

      0.5 feet (15 cm)

    • Spread

      1 feet (30 cm)

    • Plant type

      Herb

    • Hardiness zones

      5

    • Native area

      Europe

Benefits

  • money-bagGeneral Benefits

    • Aesthetic Appeal: Cymbalaria muralis, commonly known as "Ivy-leaved toadflax," adds visual interest to walls, rockeries, and garden nooks with its delicate lilac flowers and attractive foliage.
    • Erosion Control: Its ability to spread rapidly and form dense mats makes it useful for stabilizing soil on slopes and preventing erosion.
    • Wildlife Habitat: Ivy-leaved toadflax provides shelter and breeding grounds for a variety of small insects, which can be beneficial for biodiversity in the garden.
    • Low Maintenance: It is a low-maintenance plant that can thrive in poor soils and does not require regular watering or fertilizing, making it ideal for gardeners seeking minimal care options.
    • Architectural Integration: The plant often grows in cracks and crevices of walls or between paving stones, integrating seamlessly with man-made structures and softening the appearance of hard landscape features.
    • Drought Tolerance: Once established, Ivy-leaved toadflax is quite drought-tolerant, making it suitable for xeriscaping and water-wise gardens.
    • Historical Interest: As a plant that has been used ornamentally for centuries, it carries historical interest and can be used to create or maintain a period-accurate garden design.
    • Self-Seeding: Cymbalaria muralis is self-seeding, which means it will propagate itself and continue to provide coverage and blooms without the need to replant annually.
    • Seasonal Interest: It has a long flowering period from spring to fall, providing continuous seasonal interest in the garden.

  • medicalMedical Properties

    • Cymbalaria muralis, commonly known as ivy-leaved toadflax, has been used in traditional medicine for its diuretic properties.
    • The plant has been applied in folk medicine for the treatment of wounds, as it is believed to have healing effects.

  • windAir-purifying Qualities

    This plant is not specifically known for air purifying qualities.

  • leavesOther Uses

    • Cymbalaria muralis, commonly known as Ivy-leaved toadflax, can be used in fairy gardens and miniature landscapes for its small-scale foliage which creates a sense of enchantment.
    • It can serve as a living mulch in flower beds, because of its dense mat-forming habit, which helps retain soil moisture and suppress weed growth.
    • Ivy-leaved toadflax is beneficial for green roofing projects due to its tolerance of shallow soil and low maintenance requirements.
    • This plant can be utilised in educational science projects to demonstrate plant growth and phototropism, as it grows towards light.
    • Ivy-leaved toadflax is used in rural masonry and wall building as an ornamental addition that grows between stones, softening the look of the structure.
    • It can be planted in cracks and crevices of rock gardens, where its trailing nature adds to the aesthetic design and coverage of the garden.
    • Ivy-leaved toadflax's sprawling growth habit makes it a good candidate for hanging baskets, providing a cascade of foliage and flowers.
    • This plant can also be used as a ground cover in large potted arrangements, complementing taller plants and adding levels of interest.
    • In model railway setups, Ivy-leaved toadflax can be strategically used to create realistic miniature landscapes with its tiny leaves and flowers.
    • The plant can act as temporary cover for bare patches in lawns or gardens while awaiting the growth of perennial groundcovers.

Interesting Facts

  • bedFeng Shui

    The Ivy-leaved toadflax is not used in Feng Shui practice.

  • aquariusZodiac Sign Compitability

    The Ivy-leaved toadflax is not used in astrology practice.

  • spiralPlant Symbolism

    • Persistence: Kenilworth Ivy is known to grow and cling tenaciously to walls and crevices, symbolizing the ability to persist and thrive in challenging conditions.
    • Adaptability: As it can adjust to various environments and conditions, Kenilworth Ivy represents flexibility and the capacity to succeed in different situations.
    • Overcoming Obstacles: Its growth habit of overcoming architectural barriers symbolizes the capacity to overcome challenges and obstacles in one’s path.
    • Innocence: The small, delicate flowers of Kenilworth Ivy may be seen as a symbol of innocence and simplicity.

💧
Every 1-2 weeks
Water
☀️
500 - 2500 Lux
Light
💦️
5%
Humidity
🪴
Every 1-2 years
Repotting
🌱️
Spring to Summer
Propogation
✂️️
As needed
Pruning
  • water dropWater

    Kenilworth ivy should be watered when the top inch of soil feels dry to the touch, typically once a week, although this can vary depending on climate and indoor conditions. Use room temperature water and apply it directly to the soil until it begins to drain from the bottom of the pot; this might equate to about 16-32 ounces for a standard indoor pot. Avoid overhead watering to prevent leaf diseases and do not let the plant sit in water as it can lead to root rot.

  • sunLight

    Kenilworth ivy thrives in bright, indirect light but can tolerate partial shade, making it versatile for various indoor settings. It should be placed near a window that receives ample light but protected from intense midday sun, which can scorch its delicate leaves. A north or east-facing window is often an ideal spot for this plant.

  • thermometerTemperature

    Kenilworth ivy prefers cooler temperatures and performs best in environments between 50 and 70 degrees Fahrenheit. While it can survive short periods in temperatures as low as 20 degrees Fahrenheit, frost can damage the plant. Ideally, keep it in a spot without drastic temperature changes and away from cold drafts or heat sources.

  • scissorsPruning

    Prune Kenilworth ivy to maintain its shape and encourage bushier growth. Pinching off the tips of the stems is an effective method. Pruning is best done in the spring or early summer when the plant is actively growing. Regular trimming also helps prevent the plant from becoming too leggy and can stimulate new growth.

  • broomCleaning

    As needed

  • bambooSoil

    Ivy-leaved toadflax thrives in a well-drained, loamy or sandy soil mixture with a neutral to slightly alkaline pH, typically between 7.0 and 7.8. The best soil mix can be created by combining two parts peat or coconut coir, one part perlite or vermiculite, and one part sand or fine gravel to ensure good drainage and aeration. Regular garden soil can be amended with these components to suit the needs of ivy-leaved toadflax.

  • plantRepotting

    Ivy-leaved toadflax does not generally require frequent repotting as it prefers to be slightly root-bound and can often self-sow. Repotting can be done every 2-3 years or when the plant has outgrown its current container. When repotting, gently tease out the roots and provide fresh soil mix to encourage continued health and growth.

  • water dropsHumidity & Misting

    Ivy-leaved toadflax tolerates a wide range of humidity levels and does not require high humidity to thrive. It can do well in normal household humidity levels but would benefit from increased humidity in very dry climates. Averagely, a relative humidity around 40-50% is satisfactory for the plant.

  • pinSuitable locations

    • Indoor

      Place ivy-leaved toadflax in bright, indirect light indoors.

    • Outdoor

      Ivy-leaved toadflax likes semi-shaded spots outdoors.

    • Hardiness zone

      Ivy-leaved toadflax is suitable for USDA zones 4-8.

  • circleLife cycle

    Ivy-leaved toadflax (Cymbalaria muralis) starts its life cycle as a seed often nestled in wall crevices or other sheltered spots, where it germinates in spring or early summer. After seedling emergence, it develops into a low-growing, creeping perennial with small, rounded leaves and starts to produce small snapdragon-like flowers primarily from late spring to autumn but can bloom sporadically year-round in mild climates. Following pollination, usually by bees, the flowers produce capsules containing tiny seeds, and the flower stalks grow towards the dark crevices between rocks or bricks, dispersing seeds directly into suitable growing spaces in a behavior known as geocarpy. The seeds then enter a period of dormancy until the next suitable growth period, typically in spring, though in favorable conditions they may germinate sooner. Ivy-leaved toadflax can also propagate vegetatively through its creeping stems (stolons), allowing clusters of plants to colonize an area rapidly. Over the years, if conditions are conducive, the plant can spread and cover a substantial surface, maintaining its lifecycle through successive seasons of growth, blooming, seed production, and germination.

  • sproutPropogation

    • Propogation time

      Spring to Summer

    • The ideal time for propagating Cymbalaria muralis, commonly known as Kenilworth ivy, is in the spring or early summer when the plant's growth is most active. The most popular method of propagation for Kenilworth ivy is through seed sowing. Seeds can be scattered over the surface of a well-draining potting mix and lightly pressed in. They will generally germinate in 2 to 3 weeks when kept at room temperature. It's important to keep the soil evenly moist but not waterlogged throughout the germination period. As seedlings develop and grow, they can be thinned out and transplanted to their final positions once they've reached a suitable size for handling. This method is straightforward and is effective for expanding your collection of Kenilworth ivy or for starting new plants to share with friends and fellow gardeners.