How to Grow Cymbalaria Plants in your Garden

Gardener's HQ Guide to Growing Ivy Leaved Toadflax, Kenilworth Ivy, and Climbing Sailor

Although Cymbalaria plants are half hardy perennials, these ivies are normally grown as half hardy annuals by gardeners.

They are low growing and love to grow in walls and rock crevices.

Ivy-leaved Toadflax
Ivy-leaved Toadflax by Franco Folini; creative commons.

Cymbalaria Plants have purple and yellow tubular flowers that bloom in the middle of summer.

Cymbalaria muralis
Cymbalaria muralis by Ecología de Comunidades y Conservación.

Some of the common names for Cymbalaria include Kenilworth Ivy, Ivy leaved toadflax and Coliseum Ivy.

Commonly Grown Cymbalaria Species Photographs and Plant Identification

Cymbalaria muralis

Cymbalaria muralis
Cymbalaria muralis (Ivy-leaved Toadflax / Kenilworth Ivy), photograph by Andreas Rockstein; CC.

Cymbalaria pallida

Cymbalaria pallida
Cymbalaria pallida (Italian toadflax), picture by Babij; CC.

Cymbalaria Growing and Care Guide

Common Names: Ivy Leaved Toadflax, Kenilworth Ivy, Climbing Sailor, Ivy Lobelia.
Life Cycle: Half hardy perennial usually grown as a half hardy annual by gardeners.
Family: Plantaginaceae.
Height: 2 inches (5 cm).
Native: Southern Europe.

Growing Region: Zones 5 to 9.
Flowers: Summer.
Flower Details: White, purple, lilac. Tubular. Snapdragon-like.
Foliage: Herbaceous. Ivy-like. Evergreen. Heart-shaped. Lobed. Glossy.

Sow Outside: Surface. Following last frost. Spacing: 6 inches (15 cm).
Sow Inside: Germination time: two to four weeks in the light. Temperature 60°F (15°C). Ten weeks in advance. Transplant outdoors following the last frost.

Requirements: Full sunlight or light shade. Soil pH 7 to 8. Gritty soil. Moist soil. Occasional feed. Propagate: dividing rootball or cuttings in spring.
Miscellaneous: Before fertilization plants move towards the light; after fertilization plants move away from the light. This enables seed to be dropped in cooler darker places, especially useful to plants when growing in rock wall crevices.

How to grow Kenilworth Ivy and Ivy Leaved Toadflax (Cymbalaria)

If you are planting members of the Cymbalaria genus such as Kenilworth Ivy and Ivy Leaved Toadflax from seed outdoors, then they should be sown on the soil surface after the last frost of spring.

They like to grow in sunny areas, but benefit greatly from receiving shade in very hot areas.

Cymbalaria like to grow in moist soil that has a somewhat alkaline pH.

Seedlings of Kenilworth Ivy, and other Cymbalaria species, can be started early by growing from seed indoors first.

They should be started off about 10 weeks before you plant them out, following the last frost of spring.

They normally take about two to four weeks to germinate in the light, at a temperature of 15 to 18 degrees Celsius (59 to 64°F).

Once the Cymbalaria seedlings are ready, they should be transplanted outside with a spacing of about 15 cm (6 inches).

Caring for Cymbalaria in the Garden

These ivies take very little looking after. They should be watered regularly, and cut back and dead headed before any chance of setting seed, to help prevent them from taking over the garden.

I hope that you enjoyed this guide on how to grow Cymbalaria plants. You may also enjoy the following Gardener's HQ growing guides: How to grow Antirrhinum majus, Sparaxis, and Digitalis plants.