15 May 2006
And that was that
The Arborist's cutting crew came by today and put the suffering sweetgum out of its misery; only a narrow wooden disk, more or less level with the surrounding soil, remains to mark its former presence.
I had discussed with the Arborist, on the way back from the back yard, that I had a tree in the front yard with a split personality: half of it was clearly dead, and yet the other half was flourishing. Excessively so, even. (No, it wasn't an elm.) He pointed to a couple of saw marks which predated my arrival and said something to the effect that "This is what happens when people who don't know trees try to control them."
The chainsaw kittens, while they were on the scene, duly excised all the dead stuff and trimmed the live stuff back to something resembling a sensible state: the volume seems to have shrunk by a quarter, maybe a third. Perhaps more important, it's now well away from the power line. (I suspect this is why I got rather quicker service than I might have expected; avoiding power lines is a major issue for tree guys.)
If I've learned anything from this, it's that I can't let things run too awfully wild; while there's some not-so-vague satisfaction in letting nature take its own time about things, this isn't exactly the rainforest here, and the usual methods of removing dead plant material slow decomposition, or speedy forest fire have distinct disadvantages this close to downtown.
And I don't think I dispossessed any birds at least, I hadn't seen any nests in either of these trees but birds are pretty resilient.Posted at 6:23 PM to Surlywood