Wednesday, May 19, 2010

Same song, second verse, little bit louder and a little bit worse

  Horse Chestnut bloom

I know I said I was sorry once before for reruns of topics, but if I'm going to be true to what goes on around here every day, I have to report the facts and nothing but, right?  Well, today was another one of 'those' days, yes, chainsaws and tractors abounded once again. 

I worked on weeding all morning and afternoon today.  When Carl and Joel came home, Joel went straight to working on the vegetable garden with his tractor and it should be just about ready to plant.  Carl and I worked on the hosta bed by the shop again.  As I said before, it is almost harder to close up a bed than to make one larger especially if you want to save the plant material. 

Ann came over right after work (remember I said if there's anyone I can count on for help, it's Ann?) to assist us in any way she could.  She set to work on digging hostas while I transplanted them, putting rocks on pallets and helping out wherever she was needed.    Plus, she was our photographer for the evening, too! 

While I was planting, Joel finished up with the vegetable garden working and came to help Carl remove one of the stumps from the two spruce trees we cut down last week.  They were too big to try to pull out by the roots, but Carl had an idea.  He attached a chain 'come-along' between the two stumps and started to ratchet while Joel dug and chopped at the roots with an ax.

 After a lot of digging, chopping and ratcheting, the stump came out!
Hauling the stump out

I had a whole row of H. albomarginata (the green & white hosta) to transplant, so I decided to do rather cliche thing and edge the lane bed with them.  The hostas do keep the weeds down eliminating the need to edge by hand, though I know, a freshly edged bed is so much nicer, but more work.  While I was replanting the hostas on the west side of the lane bed, I got to thinking about how wide the bed was and how straight the edging was going to look, so I decided to ask if anyone else could see any sense in keeping three of the trees which were planted in a straight line and basically shading everything next to them.  

We all came to the same consensus: might as well remove the trees.   (Well, Carl agreed with me, but I'm sure Ann and Joel were thinking unprintable thoughts!)  Once again, a decision not made lightly, least of all by me.  I remember planting each and every one of these trees, so it's not like they don't mean anything to me.  But as Adrian Bloom says, 'There are so many other plants waiting in the wings to show what they can do'.  Mr. Bloom also wrote in one his books,  'The chainsaw is evident in my garden every year, pruning, thinning and removing overgrown specimens' (loosely quoted here) so I am not alone with this practice.
 Can you find the Crazy Gardener (me) in this picture?
It was while planting the hostas around this tree and the two next to it that I got the idea about removing the three trees. 

First, Joel sawed the top out of the tree at a height he could reach:

The first tree was a blue spruce:

Rolling it over to the lane

Out to the brush pile
Pulling out the stump, first one way and then--
the other. (Looking at these pictures, I could use a makeover or at least, a new hat!)

The next two trees were red pine:

Number three:
By the time we got done loading up the branches and lumber and pulling out the two stumps, it was dark.
Hauling out the last of the three stumps.

By this time, it was 9PM and we still hadn't had supper yet.  Joel heard about another tractor near Algoma he wanted to take a look at.  He'd been thinking about going earlier in the evening, but of course the work got in the way.  He decided to take a ride up there anyway right after we put the tractors away.  Ann met up with us in Green Bay and we all headed up to Algoma.  (I know, can we pack anything more in to one night?) We found the tractor without a problem, well Joel did, I think the rest of us were too tired to see much of anything, and he managed to take a few pictures so he can think it over.

We grabbed a bite to eat at Mickey D's and then parted ways with Ann around 11PM.  Long days,short nights........and I'd better get some Z's too.


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