I was able to work from home today, so I used the time in the morning to saw some small tree branches to get practice as a tree-caretaker. Now having had some time to watch the yard and the sun, it’s obvious that the big old tree in the yard is hogging all the light from noontime onwards, and none of the beds get a respectable amount of direct sunlight after noon.
In the morning before work I also trimmed a small tree that had multiple branches, just outside of the fence on the front side of the property. I was reading last night about how to trim trees, and I used the rule of “trim up to 1/3 of the tree’s height” to guide me.
Likewise, the two trees next to the neighbor’s side block the sun on the big beds in the morning. The two small trees are coming down this weekend. I got my pole saw technique down pretty good. The pole has an extension sleeve so it can do twice the distance, but it keeps slipping off, so it’s not that useful. I’ll try it later.
I will somehow have to get the massive branches down from the Old Fella to permit light to fall on the garden beds. It will be quite difficult as there is no entry way to bring in equipment. I may have to hire someone. If it turns out no one will do it, I think I have a strategy: Cut on the big branches just enough that they bend to the ground, but they don’t fall – from there, trim smaller branches from it until the big branch is ready to be dropped. The height of the big branches is 15 feet at least. Neighbor says he has a tall ladder – my guess is it is a telescoping ladder, not a folding ladder. I will also buy a chainsaw, an electric one, same brand as my mower so I can share batteries between the two machines.
In the evening I set to stripping the branches that I had cut down. I ended up making about 2 barrels of leaves and twig pieces. The two small trees have sinuous, wavy branches with slender, bendy leaves. The skin on the branches is very smooth and overall this type of tree is quite beautiful. I don’t know what it’s called, but the pieces will do very well as ornaments. I plan to use it creatively in the garden and in the landscape. It’s almost a shame they have to come down, but there is poor light on the garden beds.
Restrospective edit: They’re willow trees.
I also pulled up the discarded pavers behind the shed, and lined them along the fence. There were actually fat worms hanging out under the pavers. The soil there, although light-colored, is pretty moist. I strewed grass clippings, loosened the soil with a pitchfork, and I’m going to make that area a grass/leaf compost pile.
Leaf compost site in progress. All the pavers are off the ground, I loosed the soil and laid down grass clippings as usual.