Sunday, May 10, 2009

Out With the Old in with the Yews

I'm getting ready to head into work after my weekend and I'm actually looking forward to it so I can slow things down some. Not really. The past few days have been a bit busier than I like with a ton of yard work that couldn't be ignored any longer in addition to whatever else I had planned for the weekend. Maybe this speaks to the dream I wrote about in my previous entry.

I've been unhappy with the look of an island of Junipers in our front yard for some time. I planted them when I had our home built in 1992 and they looked fine until a few years ago when they became overgrown. There isn't much you can do in the way of trimming them so they keep their natural look and that's what I'd like. They suffered a lot of winter kill this past winter making my need to replace them a higher priority and this was the weekend to finally do it.

I got busy Thursday morning with a hand saw working to trim the limbs off down to the base. It was going okay but I could see that it was going to be several trips to the compost site ten miles away before I'd be able to begin the work of digging out the roots. I wasn't looking forward to that as I only had a shovel and an ax.

On my first trip to the compost site I noticed that a neighbor around the corner had hired a crew to cut down a large oak in his yard. On my return I stopped and talked with the guy operating the stump grinder to see if there was time in his day to take a look at what I was working on. He said he'd have his boss stop by and give me an estimate. I'm usually fine with doing this sort of work myself but I could see I wasn't helping my still recovering right forearm and my tendinitis issues. It doesn't take much for me these days; that's really all the excuse I needed.

I struck a deal with the boss-man and within an hour of my inquiring I had some help. While the guy on the stump grinder was finishing what I'd started I went to the back yard and began pulling out five other Junipers from our other two rock islands which had also been badly damaged over the winter. I'm done with Junipers. I took the liberty of dumping those carcases off on the pile he'd made which they'd shred and haul off for me.

At the start of the project I had a thought that this could make for an interesting time lapse video. So, in true geek fashion I set out my camera on its tripod and let it roll for a couple hours while the work was being done. Have a look.

I spent the better part of Friday making another run to Gertens to buy some Taunton Yews to go where the Junipers had been and getting them planted. The new plants will take a few years to begin to fill in. I'm sorry for the rabbits who had their homes torn up as there were a few who made their home among the overgrown Junipers. The Yews will make nice homes for them in another few years.

I wrapped up early Friday so I could watch Rachel play violin for a friend's concert performance for school at Lakeville Art Center. It wasn't a difficult piece that she was playing and the focus was on the singer and not the accompanying musicians. There was no mic on Rachel's violin but the video I took of the group does an good job of capturing her efforts.

My riding took a back seat this weekend with the exception of yesterday. I was able to get out for a few hours in the afternoon once I'd put the finishing touches on some Mother's Day details.

Tammy and I took the pups for a walk last night before going out to celebrate Mother's Day with Rachel. There would be no time today as we both work. Anyway, while we were out walking, Charlie was doing his usual zig-zag route looking for sticks and pine cones to carry in his mouth along the way. He'll often carry whatever he has until something more intriguing catches his eye. A mile from home I noticed that he'd scored a Greenie from somewhere. There would be no replacing it with a stale pine cone or stick.

We had to laugh because it looked like he was taunting Allie and Toby with it. For once they were both showing an interest in what he had in his mouth. Not surprisingly he finished the walk with the Greenie knowing full well that he'd scored something big and not to be discarded. I suppose that's as good a testament as a company could hope to receive.


Jackie said...

This was so funny to watch! I just wish I could see it in reverse now! The yard looks great. Did you happen to think back to 16 years ago when you first put them in and how your life has gone through so many changes that you would have never expected in a million years? All for the better I would say. Now maybe on Fathers Day you can relax a bit.

Kevin said...

Did you happen to think back to 16 years ago when you first put them in and how your life has gone through so many changes that you would have never expected in a million years?Actually, yes. Some thoughts along that line crossed my mind while I was out there.

It's a nice job to have behind me but I've still got other yard projects to do. I'd like to finish the stained glass panel we're working on first and then, maybe then, think about those other projects.