Creeping Fig – Brick Decoration

Q: I would like to grow creeping fig to give the brick on our house a more “aged” look. Is there any problem with this?

A: I’m not a big fan of fig (or ivy) growing on a wall. The vine provides cover for insects, and sometimes animals, which can invade the house. The evergreen leaves shade the wall, but they also trap moisture, which can lead to mildew, rot or brick deterioration. The creeping vine tips can grow under wood and vinyl siding and loosen it. My neighbor has creeping fig growing up the brick and across the lintel of her three-car garage. It looks great when it is green, but January cold killed most of it this year.

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