Wednesday, August 13, 2008

It Was Necessary...

Before leaving for Michigan, it was determined that some of our trees needed to be removed.
Cutting trees is difficult, but sometimes necessary.

This is a "Before" Photograph, taken July 31, 2008.
You might notice that the tree in the center front of the yard is actually comprised of three separate Shagbark Hickory trees that had grown from three separate seeds and competing for root and sun-space. I also noticed each tree had become quite tall and spindly; each having 1/3 of the total canopy on one side of its trunk. During the wind storm just prior to my leaving for Michigan, it became apparent that at least one of them would probably be landing on the house before too long. You might also notice their close proximity to the house. There are also four trees in front of the south end of the house... one small one very near the large one on the corner and one "lighted" one close to another at its left. The two center ones had to go, too. Too little root space, as well as canopy space, for so many trees within 5-6 feet of the house!)

At any rate, these trees, along with a few others, were cut down while I was in Michigan. This is how the front of the house looks now. I really miss the beauty of the front canopy, but we will plant a good, straight oak tree a bit further from the house in the front yard this Fall. And then I'll feel better.

After, taken August 12, 2008
After - another view
There were also two tall trees on the north side of the garage. One was much larger than the other, and was leaning dangerously over the garage (you can see it behind the wooden screen). It had to go. The top of the other was dying, (it's the split one in the sunlight) as it was growing into the canopy of a Much larger tree to its north. It also had to go.


It's really bare "up north." I really miss the trees, but will be planting something before too long.


This is of the south backyard "woodland walk" area. One more tree was taken from this crowded area... behind the bench. It was not huge, but it was leaning towards the neighbor's house, in search of sunlight. We didn't think it needed to work that hard. And we would not like to have our neighbors be apprehensive over our trees. (They had two removed that were leaning over their house, too!)
It's not as Shady, but it'll be okay.


Gail said...

Oh my, there is a a lot more light! I kind of like being able to really appreciate your beautiful bench and I can see your plantings. Now you have a spot for some great shade loving shrubs that will protect your hosta and other shade babies! I missed you while you were gone!


Mr. McGregor's Daughter said...

Welcome back! It is hard to have tall trees cut down, but the others will grow the better for it. Did you leave any Shagbark Hickories? I do love them. What kind of Oak will you plant? Last year I planted a very small Quercus x bebbiana. I'm hoping for hybrid vigor. Once you get used to the trees being gone, you'll appreciate the new planting possibilities.

Shady Gardener said...

Hi Gail, Thanks for your encouragement, and it's nice to be missed. ;-) You're right... I've been thinking more about the understory lately! :-)

MMD, Hi! We went to the Iowa State Fair yesterday. I learned something about oak trees that I hadn't known before (but had observed). Oaks cannot grow and thrive under a crowded canopy. There you go. It's good woodland management (and easier!) to thin those oaks before they get very large. I will look forward to "exploring the new-planting possibilities!" :-)

Iowa Victory Gardener said...

Shady, I too, am glad to see you back in action! Too bad you didn't let me know you were in town, because I could have given you some more Monarda and stuff to work into your garden. But then, given the weedy state things have been here lately, I would have been embarrassed to have you see the place, but after today, it's getting better! Next time you're in town, email me (see email in my profile) and maybe you can stop by for a few freebies if it's before frost time! We're only about 15 min from downtown and if you come in on Fleur Drive, it's a snap to find us!

Now I have to fret about that "award" you nominated me for ... I do appreciate the hat tip, but I'm the kind of guy who just likes to "stay in the blog shade" so to speak. :-)

Shady Gardener said...

I don't know how you found out I was in Des Moines, but we went to the Fair on Friday! It was a beautiful day and we had a great time!!

I'd love to drop by sometime! I'm hoping to drive "north" in a week or two. Are you SURE you'd part with some Monarda? I'd love some more, as my new little plant is pretty scraggly!

As far as awards... I'm not certain I'm worthy. However, it was a flattering surprise. I'm rather inclined to stay in the shade as well. ;-) (But you have earned it!)

Anonymous said...

My goodness - what a difference! A garden is truly always in a state of flux. I miss the trees, but one could get used to the clean, more open feeling. As you say, that oak will be something to treasure, as it matures. Hope your shady characters thrive in the understory... Deb

Shady Gardener said...

Hi Deb, The backyard hasn't changed... still beautifully shady back there. Yes, the open front yard and areas is quite a change. And it's not all bad! ;-)

Kathleen said...

I can appreciate how hard that decision was ~ I have some aspen that need to be cut and it's killing me! I think your garden (and house) will be better off in the long run for it.

Shady Gardener said...

Thanks for your empathy, Kathleen. And thanks for visiting. :-)