We moved into our house a few years ago and between babies we've been making some I roads into the garden. Previous owners believed in letting it grow wild which, in some areas, is lovely. Owners prior to them seemed to think a garden was for racing off road bikes around (). We've managed to clear a path to put a swing set and slide in for the DCs, and are now starting to look at areas where we can make beds. There is so much Ivy that I'm starting to despair! How best to get rid of it? There are large swathes of the stuff. I've been digging and pulling it up, along with brambles, but I'm sure I'm missing bits. By disturbing it will it give off little bulbils and grow even more vigorously? I don't like the idea of chemicals but would they work and which is the best one?
I have ivy all along my garden at the bottom of the privet hedge. I really like it - it provides a wildlife environment and it keeps down the privet a bit, sparing me the need to cut as frequently.
The first thing you need to do is to decide where you do and don't want it! And accept that it's a growing thing, so it will try to grow from where you do want it to where you don't.
Once you've decided your boundaries, just pull it up out of the areas where it's invading. Just ripping it out is fine and won't do harm apart from to your arms, which will ache because where there's a lot of it, this is hard work after a while. If you clear a bit a day, however, you can get through it - the key is to be systematic and keep on top of it. A lot of people fail with ivy simply because they think one big clear will do it - of course, nature abhors a vacuum, and if you don't keep an eye on a patch of bare soil, it will soon be colonised again with weeds, and very likely the same weeds as you just removed. So once you've cleared the space, just go along the boundary of the ivy every so often and chop out anything that's trying to make its way into the garden
As with any weed, if you improve the soil of the area you've cleared straight away and then plant it up, your plants will help you in the fight! So getting in alternative ground cover/perennials will be useful, plus you get the plants you actually want!