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Hi leafy321 and jpscloud
I agree with you both about ivy. I know a tree which was originally a hawthorn but now is more of an ivy tree. The stems of the ivy look like the trunk of the tree they are so wide. Although, this particular one is not, strictly, all that useful for hedgehogs, it is brilliant for all sorts of wildlife. Absolutely buzzes with bees, mostly solitary, when the flowers are out. Despite the ivy being so large, the hawthorn is still alive and peaks through in various places, complete with berries (for the birds) in season. It has certainly not been strangled by the ivy (which is what some people fear). The ivy is helping to support it. It also provides a very good canopy for sheep or other animals to shelter from the sun underneath. It has already provided very many years of food and support for wildlife and hopefully will have many more.
I realise not everyone would want an ivy tree so large – this one is in a wildlife friendly field, and certainly wouldn’t fit easily into my garden – but as you say, it is easy to keep ivy trimmed back in rotation. I am lucky that, being near a railway line, there is a fair amount of mature ivy here too, which, from what you say, may be why I see holly blues in my garden from time to time.