the holly and the ivy....

oh wait, it's nowhere near Christmas yet.

This is just about the ivy.

We all know I live in a block of units.
Right behind is an identical block of units.
The unit directly behind mine has a new family, with a toddling baby.
About one year old or thereabouts.
The mother brings him outside to play every afternoon for about an hour.

The unit behind me also has ivy growing along and through the back fence.
It's been there since before I moved in over eight years ago.
It's a big stand of ivy.
Some of the stems are quite thick and tough.
I've been trimming back the edge whenever it gets too close to the lawn, but that's it.
I'm not fussed about the ivy.

The new family however, is fussed. The ivy hides all manner of creepy crawlies.
Mostly spiders.
Today while I was reading emails, I heard lots of scraping noises coming from the fence area.
I looked out the back window just in time to see a clump of ivy being pulled back through the fence.
I assumed the father was beginning to remove the ivy.

After a while though, I noticed that not much progress was being made.
I decided to help.
I went outside with the short shears and my thick gardening gloves, knocked on the fence, and asked if they'd like me to cut back some of the stems from my side.
A woman about my own size popped her head up and said it was okay, she'd manage.
Well! I wasn't letting her do all that on her own, so I said there's a lot of ivy on my side and I'd start cutting.
Which I did.

I cut, I yanked, I tossed long ropes of ivy behind me onto my lawn.
Until my side of the fence was almost clear, with only knotted stems poking through the fence in places.
I couldn't get those out, neither could she.

The woman thanked me, then I raked the huge pile of ivy off the grass and onto my driveway.
I'll bin it tomorrow.

I'm here to say,  I've never seen so many spiders running for cover all at once.
No wonder she wants the ivy gone!!  Her baby needs to be safe.
Me? I don't care one way or the other. I like ivy, it's nice to look at, but I can live without it.

I was very careful to check my clothes for spiders before going back inside.

I knew that my arms and shoulders would ache later, but I didn't think it would happen 5 minutes later.
I thought a couple of hours at least. But I have plenty of Deep Heat to rub in, so I'll be fine.


  1. Forget the Ivy. I hate spiders and bugs, which I know is silly but they yuck me out when I have to kill them because I don't want them biting me.
    That was so kind of you to help her out.

  2. Linda; Spiders and bugs don't bother me a bit, even all the poisonous ones we have here in Australia. But with a baby toddling around the yard the mother is right to be concerned. I really felt I should help since the ivy had grown through to my side quite a lot and she wouldn't have been able to pull it all through.

  3. My smaller portion hates ivy and spiders. Probably equally. He would have canonised you for your niceness today. Hope you don't stiffen up too much overnight.

  4. EC; this was yesterday and I expected to be a bit stiff this morning, but surprisingly, I wasn't. It probably helped that I went to bed covered in Deep Heat.

  5. I've heard that mice are fond of ivy too. Also, it's a real pest in many areas where it's not native. I pulled mine out years ago and planted periwinkles in its place.

  6. We thought about ridding ourselves of ivy once - but then we saw birds nesting in it!! It's still there, and about to take over the shed like a triffid!!

  7. Ah, Deep Heat, the perfume of the unexpectedly active.
    You were a good neighbour to help out.

  8. We knew someone called Ivy. We used to make jokes about Ivy being rampant and never letting Ivy get out of control.

  9. Creeps me out, thinking of that many spiders. I can't stand them inside. But... I hesitate to say... I leave them well alone if they've found somewhere to live that doesn't affect me outside. Though I could well change my mind if we ever got overrun with ivy!

  10. That was sweet of you to go out and help your neighbor. Sounds like it was a big job. Ivy looks quaint growing up a trellis or on a porch or wood fence but it holds the moisture and also rots the wood. Spiders are a big consideration, too.

  11. Snowbrush; there was a mouse living somewhere in the yard when I first moved in, but after a couple of years he just vanished.

    Red NOmad; taking over the shed like triffid! So, just like mine then, which was taking over the fence on both sides.

    mybabyjohn; deep heat is my best friend right now.

    Andrew; I knew a "Rose" in high school, but she was sweet, not at all prickly.

    Being Me; normally I leave spiders alone, but the ivy had to go. I'm sure they've all found new homes by now.

    Manzanita; it wasn't such a big job as I thought it would be, mostly because my side was only growth coming though the fence. The whole root system was on the neighbour's side of the fence.

  12. OOwww to the spiders running everywhere, I don't mind them but not if they are running towards me. Ivy will grow back unless she digs it out of the ground, but hopefully she can keep it under control. What a great neighbour you are.


Post a Comment

Popular posts from this blog

the new kick-start diet

a lizard in your home is lucky, right?

Sunday Selections