No, I'd never been to the Conservatory Garden in Central Park in my lifetime as a New Yorker. The enormous gates, donated by the Vanderbilts, lured us into this guest park late one afternoon last weekend. These frolicksome maidens didn't seem to feel the chill.
According to the park's official site, "The northern, French-style garden showcases parterres of germander and spectacular seasonal displays of spring tulips, and Korean chrysanthemums in autumn, all within an ellipse of Japanese holly. In the center is the charming 'Three Dancing Maidens' fountain by German sculptor, Walter Schott, which once stood at the home of Samuel Untermyer's estate, Greystone, in the Bronx."
The garden has what they call great "bones"...design that stands its ground in any season, with or without flounces of flowers.
The trees in this allee are pink and white crabapples; they framed a stately Italianate rectangle of snow crowned by a skeletal pergola.
In spring, apparently, it all explodes in bloom. (See the park's aerial shot, below.) On this February day, aside from one dog-walker, we had it all to ourselves.