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Don't you love that English cottage look ivy gives to a house when it climbing up the wall?  But who has the time to manicure it and keep it looking neat and finished?  Well, here are few tips on how to manicure ivy getting a little bit of that English cottage look without spending hours trimming it.

How to manicure ivy on a mailbox

Selecting an ivy is fun but keeping it under control can be a chore.  After years of taking care of our creeping ivy on our mailbox, I have finally come up with a quick way on how to manicure ivy the fast and easy way.

This post contains affiliate links, which means I receive a commission if you make a purchase using the links below. All opinions are all my own.

How to Manicure Ivy

Before we jump into how to manicure ivy let's talk about selecting ivy. I am no expert but after researching the ivy on my mailbox I found out a few things I thought you might like to know.

First, select where you want to grow it and make sure it is safe for that wall.  I chose my mailbox because it is a small area to maintain.

Then, do some research and decide which kind of ivy you want and determine if it is okay to grow on the wall you have selected.

I decided on creeping fig because it is very petite and can be manicured very close to the wall.

And I chose my brick mailbox because it is a small area to work with.

Next, consult your local nursery on what to purchase, planting, and caring for your ivy.  After working with my local nursery, Tallahassee Nurseries, to select plants for our screened in porch decorating ideas I realized how valuable they are when selecting plants.

They know what will grow the best in your environment. After you plant your ivy before you know it the ivy will need trimming.

Creeping ivy on a mailbox

What do I need to Trim Ivy on my House?

How to Trim Creeping Ivy on a House?

Trim Back the Vines

Talk about out of control.  Boy, does mine need a cutting?

So, here is how you manicure your creeping fig ivy.  Start with running your power hedge trimmer, I use the Ryobi hedge trimmer, parallel to the wall and trim back any wild vines that are coming out of the ivy.

I like to go in an upward motion because that is the way the ivy grew. I feel like it is safer for the vines if you move up rather than down with your hedge trimmer.

Make sure not to cut to close to the wall.  You want the greenery to stay nice and full but nestled to the wall.

Cut the Design

Use some pruning shears, garden scissors, or kitchen scissors, which is what I use, for this step.

Gently pull a loose vine out and snip it along the edge of the design you are trying to follow.

When you come to an edge or something like the number plate on my mailbox angle your scissors at 45 degrees and miter towards the edge or plate.

Once finished this is what it looks like.

How to trim ivy around numbers on a mailbox

Clean Up

Here is a quick clean up tip.  Before you start the project lay a tarp down around the base of the wall, mailbox or wherever your ivy is growing.

When you are finished pick up the tarp and toss the clipping.  Talk about easy!!!

Or if you are impatient like me go ahead and start trimming away and rake the trimming into a pile and discard them. Next, grab your leaf blower and blow away any excess cutting.


It is much easier than it looks to care for creeping fig.

I actually do not have a green thumb and I have no training in landscaping.  So if I can do this I am sure you can do it too.

Here are a few after photos on how to manicure ivy.

Brick mailbox with traditional white numbers and creeping ivy

It's really that simple and easy!

Brick mailbox with creeping ivy all the way around except for the top and showing how to manicure ivy.

Now that your ivy is manicured try out some container flower gardening. I have two posts and a video showing you the steps to creating beautiful container gardens.

I hope your ivy turns out beautiful and I hope you have a great day!

Happy Decorating!

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Saturday 14th of May 2022

Thanks for this tutorial! Do you use the Ryobi hedge trimmers or the garden sheers to make the edge around the top of the brick? I have the fig ivy on the wall of my house and I want a quick way to keep it from climbing over the edge. I’m afraid it’ll have to be garden sheets which feels like more work. 😬 thanks!

Linda McDonald

Saturday 14th of May 2022

I use the Ryobi hedge trimmer.