I will admit that it looks pretty and all, almost like there is an enchantment coving the branches of the Vitex that grows along the side of the garage, when in reality it is the result of a very real ice storm that blew through the region in the wee hours of the morning – knocking out our electricity for close to four hours!
Ours is a house filled with contagion! It looks like both influenza and the noronvirus are running rampant this year, and with the spike in temperature this past two days, I am hearing lots of coughing and sniffling. I came home from work early yesterday, medicated myself into a pleasurable stupor and crawled beneath the blankets. A loud popping and arc of blue light sometimes in the wee hours signaled the sudden loss of power.
I awoke this morning to a window encased in ice. Looking out from the front door I gasped in horror to see my beloved Metasequoia ‘Goldrush’ bent almost to the ground. I had thrilled in its growth spurt this past year – it is now close to 3m in height. Looking further afield I noticed my Cercis ‘Burgundy Hearts’ was also entombed in ice, with a decidedly dangerous keel to the right. Sick or no, on went the coat. Kettle was boiled, rubber mallet was retrieved from the garage, and out I went to rescue two of my favourite kids! These photos show what they look like now: granted there was a lot of pruning required, but I’d rather they look sparse now and have the chance to fill in later! [Worst case scenario running through my head this entire time was I would be able to replace them both if necessary! It looks as though the storm has passed over. Temps are supposed to drop considerably in the next forty eight. And all this time, the car remains entombed in ice. Its all about priorities is it not!
My second Metasequoia [M. ‘Matthaei Broom] is bungied against the veranda so has remained upright while being incased in ice.
The annual holiday wreath that hangs from the veranda looks ‘complete’ with the icicles dangling from the branches. If only you could market this effect in a spray! It was the one sign of whimsy – it isn’t alive technically, and I do replace it every year – on a morning rife with anxiety and concern.
If you look closely enough you can make out the distinct Geisha fan shape of the foliage on Acer shirasawanum ‘Aureum’ who, although firmly encased in an icy grip, seems to have come through unscathed!
"For she is a fair maiden, fairest lady of a house of queens. And yet I know not how I should speak of her. When I first looked on her and perceived her unhappiness, it seemed to me that I saw a white flower standing straight and proud, shapely as a lily, and yet knew that it was hard, as if wrought by elf-wrights out of steel. Or was it, maybe, a frost that had turned its sap to ice, and so it stood, bitter-sweet, still fair to see, but stricken, soon to fall and die?"
J R R Tolkien