The Woodsman has come to do his dirty work, and I am not at all happy about it.
Sort of an Anti-Lorax (a Dr. Seuss reference for those too young to know), the Tree Man was called to my property to remove some trees. We have had this happen before. I recall that there may have been over twenty trees on my under-half-acre of suburbia when we moved here. We picked this neighborhood because it was full of big old stately trees that made it clear that this was no cornfield when homes were built late in the Eisenhower Administration. But just like the Eisenhower Administration, too many of them have become history.
The first to go was a dead maple by the road. A guy knocked on the door and kept going lower on his bid until I could no longer resist him, and given that it was a relatively small tree far away from anything it could damage his (likely) lack of insurance did not concern me.
Then there were two or three silver maples across the back of the house. More sun, less shade but necessary as they were dying. I almost forgot about the nasty gnarled apple tree that looked like it had actually caught on fire once. Out it went, and along with it the annual piles of rotting apples full of bees.
But those were the easy ones. Later ones got harder, like the hickory that had to be 120 feet tall. It died suddenly after a drought and had to go given its proximity to the bedroom where we sleep.
But time is now up for two trees that Marianne has had it in for. There is the Bradford pear tree that was quite small when we moved in. It has gotten huge and oddly shaped. Everyone says it will split in two but it never has. An ounce of prevention is Marianne’s motto, and the BP is going to become firewood. I will miss that one.
There is also a sweet gum next to the driveway. It is close to power lines and has been disfigured by the power company’s crews . It also drops those miserable spikey things into the yard and on the driveway by the hundreds. But it shades the driveway and turns beautiful colors in the fall. And you can’t discern the horrible shape from the side that faces our house.
Why do I hate losing trees? Maybe because it seems that anything that takes so long to get so big should be saved. Maybe because I like the atmosphere that big, established trees give our home. I am less enamored of cleaning leaves out of gutters. But there is a price for the good things in life.
I have been derelict in planting new trees over the years to replace those that have gone away. Hindsight tells me that if I had replaced each one when it came down I would have some fairly nice big trees by now. But I did not, for one reason or another, and here we are.
I went home after work on the day that the woodsman did his dirty work. Woodsmen, actually, because many hands make light woodwork. Or something like that. I hate the way my house looks now. But maybe that is just my grief over newly missing trees.
This time I vow to replace them. I want something that will grow big and tall and strong. OK, and will not drop gobs of “tree trash” in the lawn every year. But even then, they will take a long time to replace what we have lost.
Photo Credit: Photo from odestreet.com under a CC 3.0 Attribution license.