Often in my travels, I come across buildings that are becoming overtaken by nature. Vines crawl through broken windows in derelict asylums, reaching in to meet the moss that blankets the walls. On the top floor of a crumbling school in Harlem, a tree has been growing for decades. But nowhere is this theme more obvious than at Riverside Hospital on North Brother Island. Kudzu and other climbing vines have overwhelmed the former quarantine island that once played home to “Typhoid” Mary Mallon, creeping up the sides of buildings, cascading into top-floor rooms through holes in ceilings. Here, in what was once an open field in front of the now-collapsed chapel, the kudzu is so dense that one must move slowly so as not to get tangled up in it. In the distance, it is overwhelming the coal house and obscures any view of the power plant besides the looming smokestack. This is truly a place where nature is winning the battle.