Plant with caution, Susan. It will definitely take over your trees. If you read my recent post about invasive plant horror stories, you will find English ivy mentioned many times:
I will add another story to the pile. I once did a restoration clean up of a historic home. The home had a screened in back porch with an outdoor light located above it. The English Ivy had traveled through where the light was and came out at the light switch inside the screened porch. It had also completely separated the electric meter box from the house so that the box was dangling from the conduit pipe. The mosquito found it to be quite the haven for a breeding ground with the cupped leaves underneath some dense older trees which were also struggling to survive with the English Ivy climbing and smothering them. We fought that English Ivy for 3 years (they probably still are!). There are many alternatives that you can plant that will give you the same coverage without the damage English Ivy can produce.
I would never plant ivy. It is evasive. It will attach itself to brick and destroy it. It looks pretty and has a regal look but it is just too much of an intruder in my opinion. There are other plants that could go on the hard-to-mow area.
can I not monitor the growth and cut it back if it is heading for the trees?
I know, about the brick, neighbor allowed it to climb and cover his brick home. It took all the mortal out, major repair. Just thought it would look nice growing down the bank. That is hard to mow! I am an avid Gardner and would take care if it keeping it out of the trees and pulling out runners to keep it from growing too thick. Using round up if necessary. I would like to post a photo, but not sure how to do that
tried to post photo, it is along the driveway, about 6 feet out away from the house. Separated by driveway, blacktop, and about 150 feet long driveway. No neighbors just a field beyond .
@Susan Cryor, yes you can keep it at bay for as long as you remain on the property and in good health to do so and of the inclination to do so.
I will stay on top of it! I have talked to my neighbors, as we are new in the neighborhood as of Sept. I asked them if they had any problem with the ivy, including my neighbor across the street. Everyone was OK with it! Now I am in my early 60's and VERY active and a Gardner who loves the work! In fact there is a sign that says " please take off your shoes, I would rather be gardening than doing housework!" And I have made pavers for my garden, one says " Summer, Winter and Fall, I love my garden best of all". People used to say I had enough flowers for the whole town. In fact, my home was known and identified as " the house with all the flowers ". It is for sale, anyone wanting to move to Skowhegan Maine? To a home build in 1893 with EVERY thing done? Anyhow I planted some of it today. Had to stop due to a storm. But will finish it as soon as possible ! Thank you for your support! I truly appreciate it!
The new issue of This Old House Magazine has advice on substitutes for English Ivy. The area in question was a slope. It mentioned Siberian carpet cypress (good soil retention, tough, drought-resistant evergreen that will tolerate some shade), Barren strawberry (perennial groundcover), and climbing hydrangea, and maybe creeping juniper. English Ivy is invasive and will kill trees.