Posts Tagged 'pruning'

5 Hours

IMG_1639 (1)

After the Pruning

This weekend the weather was GLORIOUS! No humidity, low 80s, sunshine – just perfect weather. Beginning on Friday afternoon I began psyching myself for waking early on Saturday to go out and tackle the evergreens in front of the house, which were in desperate need of pruning. I got up a little before 7:30 am, fed the cats, cleaned their litter boxes, and headed out to tackle the pruning. My husband left, came back, left again, came back. When I finally finished all I’d hoped to do, and bagged the evidence, I’d been out there for 5 hours, utilizing 2 different step ladders. Even as I type now, I feel the strain in my muscles. Ouch.

before

Before the pruning

On the other hand, although my body feels battered and bruised, the hedge and garden are looking extremely fine, in my opinion (does anyone else’s opinion matter for this???). I even tackled the willow bush along the driveway so that I can pull my car further up without fearing for the paint job. No pictures of that so you’ll have to take my word for it. Would I lie to you, honey? Now would I say something that wasn’t true? *grin*

I spent several hours on the hedge alone – getting the front, top, back and sides. I usually try to do this in the spring, before the flowers are growing, so that it’s easier to clean up the cuttings. I had to keep moving the large step ladder around the dahlias, trying not to damage them. I did at one point lose my balance anyway (on the ground, NOT on the ladder, go figure) and ended up falling on one of the dahlias. 😦 Thankfully I only damaged a piece of it, not the whole plant. There will still be flowers. I don’t use an electric hedge clipper. I use manual loppers and take my time to step back a distance and see what I’ve been doing. My goal is to take the top down sufficiently far to allow air and light to come into the front sun room under the awning, without losing the privacy we get from the hedge. I’d estimate I took off at least 8 inches from the top. I also pruned the little golden arborvitae a bit – took a bit off the top and the side by the golden rod.

after

After – look there is yard art!

I also trim the front and sides to give room to the other bushes and flowers there. The one side was reaching out to the andromeda bush and the other side was into the potted plants along the front walk. Perhaps the ‘ickiest’ part of the pruning is the back – clearing a path between the hedge and the house. That’s where the spiders hang out. Ick. Yes, yes, I KNOW they eat bugs. But I don’t like them or their webs touching me. *shudder* I go through first with a broom to clear anything like that before I start cutting. I had a lot of encouragement from the butterflies. Both the black swallowtail and the monarch butterflies were flitting about.

bush before

Before – hedge over the bottom of the awning.

Once I finally got the hedge under control, and took a few cuts at the forsythia on the corner of the sun room, I worked on the willow bush along the driveway. I’d hacked it back in the winter when we were due for a huge wet snowfall. I learned in the past that huge, wet snowfalls cause the willow to bend all the way into the driveway and until we clear that bush, we can’t move the cars. It’s been a wet spring and the willow has flourished. I also trimmed up the pots along the front walk, and weeded them, and removed the ones that were done for the year. I was doing my best “energizer bunny” imitation. 🙂 I am delighted that FINALLY the canna lilies in the front pots are blooming. Sure took them long enough. I still see very little evidence that the ones in the other pot will flower. 😦

behind the hedge

Behind the hedge and weeded container pots

After all of the pruning is done, then comes cleanup. Had I seen any evidence of the teenage boy who supposedly lives next door, I’d have tried to hire him to do get the debris into the big brown lawn bags. But as is usual this summer, there was no sign of life there, so I bagged 4 brown bags full of debris. Ouch. Anyway, I think it’s looking fine now, and there is air and light in the sun room. You can see the metal heron between the bushes. Even the metal & rocks art sculpture can be seen. Pruning the rhododendron and tying up the forsythia will have to wait til fall. I’m not sure my muscles will recover before then. 🙂
canna lilies

Balancing Act

IMG_1588

I have a dead tree behind my garage. It sits right on the property line, between my garage and the garage behind us. I got an estimate for taking it down. In my town I need a permit to have someone take down a dead tree (even one that is a hazard to property). It turns out that because it is on the property line, I need the permission of the other landowner. I left a note saying the tree was dead, I’d contracted to have it removed, I wasn’t asking for money. I got a voice mail asking me to please NOT remove the tree until after July 31. She was selling the house and closing was July 31 and please contact the new owners after that date. She didn’t want to risk something going “wrong”. I said fine, let’s hope the tree cooperates with that timing. So I’ve been watching the tree for over a month, picking up branches after rain storms.
IMG_1602

It seems that I’ve been watching the wrong tree. I looked out my window the other day and notice that my next-door neighbor’s tree had a cracked branch, and it was resting on my garage and was still partially attached to the tree. We’ve had a LOT of summer rain storms, with wind and driving rain. Between the weather and the squirrels running all over creation, the branch cracked completely. It has begun to shift. The dead leaves end used to rest on my garage roof facing my house. Somewhere in the last few days, when the branch cracked through, it is now balanced on the point of my garage roof. 🙂 I’m watching it. I moved my car out of my driveway. We approach the garage through the side door. You see – until I can get the NEW neighbors to move in and agree to let me pay for taking down a dead tree that threatens their NEW property, there is NO point in my contacting my tree service to say “Oh by the way, I have MORE deadness to remove”.
IMG_1603

You have NO idea how tempted I am to try to knock that branch down. 🙂 I think it would be so satisfying. In the meantime… I wait to meet the new neighbors.
IMG_1587


Stat Counter

wordpress analytics