Ivy is generally found as a climbing plant which, on suitable surfaces, such as trees, derelict buildings, quarry rock faces, etc., can reach over 20 metres in height. Leaves from ivy are a deep green while its flowers are greenish-yellow with five small petals. The fruit is a greenish-black, dark purple or (rarely) yellow berry 5–10 mm diameter with one to five seeds, ripening in late winter to mid-spring. The seeds are dispersed by birds which eat the berries.
Ivy is rarely used for stickmaking for two very simple reasons. Firstly, it usually grows in a terribly knarled shape and it is difficult to find a piece of sufficient length to make a suitable shank. Secondly, it is rather soft in nature and a reasonably stout shank is needed before one could apply much weight on it. Nonetheless, it is worth persisting with searching for suitable shanks because, when the bark is stripped, a lovely speckled wood is revealed.