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When it comes to decorating your chimney, growing ivy around it may seem like the obvious choice. This plant helps add to the old charm often associated with chimneys and encourages that more rustic look that many people love. Yet, when it comes down to it, ivy is not ideal for chimney décor and will likely cause more damage and expense than it is worth. Continue reading for some of the main issues involved with growing ivy on your chimney.


Lack of Circulation

Ivy, as well as other plants that are typically grown on or near the fireplace and chimney can block the brick from receiving proper air circulation. Brick absorbs moisture and when it is not given the chance to dry out will start to deteriorate. Brick needs air and sunlight to maintain its proper structure and to help keep it strong. If these things are blocked, your brick will suffer and you will eventually need repairs done.

Invading the Brick

Ivy is a living thing that bases its growth pattern on what it is surrounded by. If it grows on a chimney it will tighten around it and penetrate any openings or cracks that may have formed in the brick over time. This causes erosion and imbalance in the brick structure. It also causes these openings to get bigger, which could lead to excess moisture entering your brick.

Pests and Insects

Plant life offers a great home for many different insects that you do not want living in or around your home. Insects can cause great damage to homes and growing ivy is basically inviting them in to stay for good.

Nasty Removal Process

If you like to redecorate a lot, as many of us do, ivy is definitely not the way to go. The removal process is often difficult and can cause unsightly changes to your home. When the ivy is removed, it is likely to remove paint and stucco with it. On top of this, stronger vines are known to pull off parts of your home’s structure that have become weakened over time.


All in all, ivy requires a lot of care. If it must be grown, it should only be grown where there are literally no weak spots (such as cracks or holes) that can be penetrated. It should definitely be kept away from wood (such as window panes and trim work) and needs to be checked on and clipped regularly to ensure that it is not growing in an area where it could cause excess damage. Also, certain types of ivy can be threatening to other plant life and trees surrounding your home.

Despite the desired look it offers, it is highly recommended to not grow ivy on your chimney. It will do more harm than good and will be the cause for much-needed repairs in the long run, putting a strain on both you and your wallet. If you already have ivy growing that you want gone contact the experts at Home Safe Hearth & Chimney Inc. today to ensure every aspect of removal is done safely and properly.

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