What, you ask, could this be? Why, it’s the calling card of Hurricane Irene! This is the exposed northern face of the church next door to Chase Court. This wall faces part of the ceremony garden, up across from and past the pergola.
That’s one big pile of ivy, with more to come! In the background is intrepid chainsaw artist, Moe Conn, shown for scale. Moe is our guy to call when bad things happen to good gardens.
Here’s what it looked like after we got it all bundled and bagged and moved to the sidewalk for pick-up by the Midtown Community Benefits District (Thanks, Peter and Charles!). That’s nearly half a city block of cuttings.
You can see here where we cut the loose ivy off close to the wall to help new growth gain a foothold. That whole window was covered in ivy, along with all of the stonework around it! Top to bottom, it was about 20 feet of ivy peel.
By the way, the church was built in 1871. The building that is now Chase Court was built in 1879 as the church’s parish house, which included meeting space and a chapel. (The priest lived down the street in the rectory.) So, there have been weddings at Chase Court for 132 years!
Happily, this was the worst of it. Other than a few downed branches and crushed hostas (under the ivy!), the Chase Court gardens suffered no damage at all, and the 132-year-old building held its ground.
Here’s the big picture. It looks pretty good! The ivy will grow back quickly and continue to do its job as a great background for weddings! —David