The vine in question had been overstepping its bounds for the past couple years and I hadn’t done much more than hack at it around the edges. For a really severe trim, we needed a higher ladder and maybe a professional who would be more comfortable in the heights. We thought.
Or maybe not. Who knows how it happened—a miscalculation, a mishap, or just over-zealous clipping—but the whole vine left its moorings on our garage and came crashing forward. The debris was easily as much as you'd see from a smallish tree coming down. Now I have about 6 feet of trunk and a big gap where its leafy frame used to enclose the pond area. The trellis it used to rest on is completely bare and the part of the garage that had been invisible before had to be quickly painted to match the rest. Oh, and a hydrangea got crushed. (I think it will recover.)
It’s a wisteria, so I’m thinking it will grow back and maybe I can keep it within the bounds of ruliness this time. Meanwhile, the trellis is temporarily hidden behind a truly gigantic palm, there’s a new hydrangea, and some other tropicals are helping to enclose the pond. It’s just not the same though; I miss the big green cap (which did bloom).
Aggressive vines have always been my friends in this narrow patio space surrounded as it is by tall, narrow structures. Verticality works here, and I’m willing to maintain the more rampant of the many climbers I have. In fact, it looks now that a climbing hydrangea is well on its way to replacing part of the coverage formerly afforded by the wisteria (though not with the same height).
There are way worse things that can happen in gardening, and in life—but it was still traumatic. Maybe some tales of your worse setback will provide comfort!