Monday, October 18, 2010

#249...creeping fig, friend or foe

A few years ago, I went to the garden center for advice on what type of ivy to grow on my chimney brick. I left sceptical with 4 tiny 2" plants of creeping fig, wondering how long it would take to cover my brick. It took about 6 months to grow from the ground into a thick carpet of green extending up about 9 ft. And as you can see from the above picture it does not stop creeping. Every two to three weeks I have to trim it to keep it in shape, otherwise it looks like above, which is about 6 weeks of growth.
Here it is after I spent 1.5 hours trimming it
and here it is again before, spreading onto the house. While trimming it, I wondered if others have had issue with it, and if there were any tricks to keeping it trained. It was wishful thinking, but I did find this funny article by a local Houstonian, who describes it as a plant for the wealthy....or those wealthy enough to hire gardeners to trim it weekly. He made the point that if kept up with, it would only be a 10 minute job....and I do like how it looks when manicured, so I guess I just need to be more diligent and a better slave to my plant. Here are some more examples of creeping fig on buildings.

To trim my creeping fig, I use small clippers and hedge trimmers. I am fairly disappointed with how rusted my Corona hedge trimmers got within a few months of ownership, as I store them in the garage. They were the more costly of my two choices at my neighboorhood hardware store, and I picked them because they are light weight.


melifaif said...

So charming. Love the feel it exudes.

Julie said...

Yes. This is exactly what I'm talking about!

Obamaisgay said...

I have this growing on a brick patio in Columbia South Carolina. It hides some poor mortar work and looks great. But it does require constant care. I have to trim mine every weekend. Worth the effort.