No. 20 in a Series of 253,486.
ENGLISH IVY (Hedera helix). This beloved climber is found throughout the temperate latitudes wherever there are colleges or universities. It is well known that certain emanations or exhalations given off by the leaves of ivy are conducive to higher education, and to date no adequate chemical substitutes have been found, despite initially promising experiments with caffeine and alcohol. It should be noted that only the true English Ivy is evergreen; the superficially similar Boston Ivy, which is often deployed around the facilities of inferior educational institutions, is deciduous, meaning that no learning at all can take place during the winter months. This, indeed, is one of the few nearly infallible distinctions to be made between the superior colleges and universities and their inferiors: although the reputations of the professors and the quality of the facilities can be judged only subjectively, any competent botanist can determine the species of ivy growing on the walls.
English Ivy is a remarkably adaptable plant, and once established will spread with vigor and tenacity. In older cities with well-established institutions of higher education, ivy often spreads throughout the town, carrying the campus along with it; and most botanists believe that, by the year 2045, the entire northeastern United States will be one large university.
Astrologically speaking, English Ivy is governed by a President and a Board of Visitors and Governors.