This section is from the book "The Gardener's Monthly And Horticulturist V26", by Thomas Meehan. See also: Four-Season Harvest: Organic Vegetables from Your Home Garden All Year Long.
Travelers to Europe from America go into ecstacies over the ivy-covered walls of English homes, and many would give a good deal would the ivy cover houses as well here as there. But Dr. Bromfield, a genial English botanist of nearly half a century ago, did not think there was much to be proud of in such a green vestiture. Says he: "In this country we sometimes see houses completely embowered in ivy, which is said to keep the walls dry. To myself, I own the plant has something gloomy and repulsive when clinging artificially to habitable buildings, though beautiful and appropriate as the spontaneous vestiture of the ruined wall, craggy steep, or hollow tree. To live like an owl in an ivy bush is a way of passing existence I should beg to decline sharing with those respectable birds, or with the admirers of the sort of domicile they are said to prefer to all others." The good Doctor did not care to live in a barn either, it would seem.