Boston Ivy on the Schoolroom at Gressenhall has the scientific name Parthenocissus tricuspidata. This is a flowering plant of the grape family (Vitaceae) and unrelated to true ivy. It is a deciduous woody vine is native to Japan, Korea and Northern and eastern China. Like the related Virginia creeper, it is widely cultivated as a climbing ornamental plant to cover the facades of masonry buildings. It’s used for this in Boston, Massachusetts in the United States and has resulted in this alternative name. This usage is actually economically important because, by shading the walls during summer, it can significantly reduce cooling cost.
Scott Tampin, Heritage Gardening Trainee, Skills for the Future