Friday, January 11, 2013

My trees were as surprised as I was

kw: family events, yard maintenance

We were just taking care of business on a day I took off from work, and just about to make lunch, when the doorbell rang. It was the tree guy. I'd contracted with his boss for some tree work to be done "in early January". But I had been expecting a phone call to schedule the work. Instead, 8 men had arrived, in 3 trucks ready to work. I said, "Go ahead."

I got our cars out of the driveway, so they could use their bucket truck. In the past, we've only had rope climbers work on our trees. The bucket rider could only reach one of our three big trees with any effectiveness, so they still had to do rope work in the other two trees.

With a crew of 8, clearing out the dead wood and "round topping" our very eccentric maple tree took only about 3 hours. A few years ago the same company sent a crew of 3 to remove an 80-foot sweet gum tree that had begun to lean. They were there about 7 hours.

I got a further surprise when the bucket rider was at full height. The ground man told me he was up 75 feet. There was a lot of tree above him. I had thought our oak trees were some 60 feet tall, but they are clearly 90 feet or more. They were planted in 1961, according to our next door neighbor, so they are just over 50 years old. When an oak tree is small, it can grow up to two feet in a year. I hadn't thought that they just keep going at that rate!

After the trimming, the maple is now a symmetrical, round-topped 40-footer. A branch that was reaching for the roof is gone. The oaks are sparser; they had a lot of dead wood, which is pretty ordinary. We are lucky they are all still standing after storm Sandy's eye went right over us this Fall. Now they are more ready for the next wind storm.

No comments: