The pest search is moving to the Tiaki Tāmaki Makaurau website from early June 2021. Find out more.

German Ivy

Also known as:
Water Ivy, Parlor Ivy
South Africa

General description

Scrambling, climbing perennial vine < 5 m. Leaves are soft, hairless and bright green, with small ear-like projections at base of leaf stalks. Flowers are yellow and button-like.

What you need to know

To help protect our environment:

  • You must not breed, distribute, release or sell German ivy within the Auckland region.
  • You must not plant German ivy within the Auckland region, unless you are transferring an existing plant on your land to another location within the boundaries of the same property.
  • You must destroy any German ivy on land that you occupy if it has been planted in breach of the above rules and you are directed to do so by an authorised person.

Coastal areas, cliffs, lowland forest and riparian margins, roadsides, wasteland, open areas.

Seeds dispersed by wind. Vegetative spread from stolons.

Smothers understorey, suppresses seedling regeneration and facilitates invasive vines. Toxic to aquatic animals and terrestrial invertebrates.

Site Management

Cut and pull vines away from desirable trees and native plants before foliar spraying. Follow up treated areas 3 times per year. Encourage natural regeneration of native plants or replant treated areas where possible after 4-6 treatments to establish dense ground cover and minimise reinvasion.

Recommended approaches

Physical control

Method: Dig out

Plant parts requiring disposal: All parts

Disposal options: Remove to greenwaste or landfill if practical


Biocontrol is currently not available for this species.

Community agrichemical control recommendations

No qualifications
Cut stump and paste freshly cut base of stems with glyphosate gel
Cut stump and spray freshly cut base with 100ml glyphosate green per 1L of water

Certified Handler/Experienced agrichemical user
Foliar spray with 100ml glyphosate green per 10L of water and 20ml penetrant

CAUTION: When using any herbicide or pesticide please read the label thoroughly to ensure that all instructions and safety requirements are followed.

Similar species

Cape ivy
Senecio angulatus

Cape ivy has thicker leaves, ray florets, and a poor climbing ability. It lacks ear like projections at the base of the leaf stalks.

English ivy
Hedera helix ssp. helix

English ivy is more variable in its leaf form and colour. The stems have aerial rootlets are woody and much longer than German ivy.

madeira vine
Anredera cordifolia

Madiera vine's leaves are less toothed. It has aerial tubers and small cream flowers on spikes.

RPMP status

Whole region (Sustained Control)
Hauraki Gulf Controlled Area Notice pest
German ivy - Main species image