Tuesday, June 15, 2010


Commonly known as the 'Katsura' , and the first tree that we planted on this property perhaps eight years ago.  It is a lovely shade tree which emits a fragrance in the fall that I can only describe as the aroma of cookies baking.  The leaves turn a soft yellow before dropping.  This tree can grow to the colossal height of 40 - 60 feet, believe it - in these few years it has gained at least 10 to 15 feet!  I have been thinking about trees as we continue to lose the ancient apples at an alarming rate.  I miss the old country properties with their signature tall black walnut and copper beech trees - majestic trees, trees that you could hang a swing from.  Today's "mac-mansions' cannot afford the space that a copper beech requires - the competition of septic fields and requisite hot tubs, not to mention the eerily-colored swimming pools and tennis courts makes this tree obsolete in a contemporary landscape.  Call me old fashioned, but the neighborhood is changing.  And not for the better, in my opinion.

I think that when you live on a piece of land, when you steward it faithfully and long, it is like entering into a relationship.  You promise to be faithful and supportive; you put your best foot forward.  You suffer the same highs and lows - the joys and disappointments of any covenant.  You get real.  You roll up your sleeves and pull down your ballcap and wade into the wild raspberry canes, swearing vowing to turn them into a long border of hyperion day lilies.  Your eyes squint in the face of the 95 degree days and yet you plod forward, creating an herb garden where once stood a dilapidated above-ground pool. (The one that HAD to go.  The one that almost broke the deal when the original owner refused to move it before papers were signed).  You had a vision.  Sometimes you left the truck running beside the border so that you could escape the insufferable heat - treating yourself to a 3 minute hiatus of A/C relief.  But. You. Went. Forward.  

So, we've lost another apple tree and that brings the count to three this year.
What do you think about a chicken coop in its place?  Something vintage, something really radical?  (stay tuned)

The question for this day was - what will be left of the garden when I get home?   Marauding ground-hogs - pathetic stumps where once stood maturing broccoli, mass destruction ...
nope - it's all good.  Dodged another bullet, but I cannot promise the same for the ground-pigs.
The grapes are beginning the long ascent to the top of the pergola.  The yellow plum tree is producing some promising fruit and the day lily border, thanks to my helper Merilee, is looking beautiful.  
First man up - Stella d'oro, the superman of all day lilies!

1 comment:

Bea said...

I must have missed it somewhere. What's killing the apple trees? Just time or something else?