I think that I shall never see
A poem lovely as a tree.
A tree whose hungry mouth is prest
Against the earth's sweet flowing breast.
A tree that looks at God all day
And lifts her leafy arms to pray.
A tree that may in summer wear
A nest of robins in her hair.
Upon whose bosom snow has Lain;
Who intimately lives with rain.
Poems are made by fools like me,
But only God can make a tree.
by Joyce Kilmer
Love this poem! But I have to beg God's forgiveness in that he is not the only one that can make a tree; my mom and dad were also able to make trees, not only one but four...and this weekend unfortunately I had to witness the death of two of them.
It's with great sadness that I tell this story, but it had to be done. You see, I'm making several home repairs, maintenance and remodeling. One of the things I am doing is having a new fence installed.
The old fence had seen better days. It had been built by my mom and dad and the years were showing up on the old gal. Windstorms, weather, rusting hinges and the fact that a car drove through the fence a few years ago were causing it to sag and I was fearful that the next good windstorm would carry it away.
My fence guys, Bob and Danny showed me how the roots were exposed and had already cracked the existing cement slab the fence rested on and the roots were heading towards the sewer system. The decision was made before they could build the fence for me to contact a tree removal company.
Last Saturday, my gardener Ernesto had his crew come out and take down the two trees in question. The other two were a different species that did not grow the same way as the two coming down. They told me the separate names but I didn't write it down, all I know is that all four are non-fruit bearing pistachio trees.
My dad was a farmer and my mom tells the story of one year at Easter, my dad took us and some friends to a beautiful spot he had found out on the ranch where we could spend the day playing underneath the Pistachio and Almond trees and the adults could hide the eggs. Mom and Dad saw the little trees growing wild near the fields so they brought them home and planted them. That was between 22 to 25 years ago, so you can imagine how big they are now. Last year I had them trimmed so this year they just blossomed. Here's a photo of the trees.
One tree was growing inside the fence, that's the one at the far right next to the blue shed (which my mom and dad also built themselves and I'm hoping to give it a face-lift as well, stay tuned), the other is growing outside of the fence. You can see how full and lush they are, and that fence is at least 6 feet tall so they had to be at least 36 feet tall!
This photo is a little grainy, but you can see the concrete underneath already in pieces. This was causing the inside chain link fence to bend and loosen which then loosened the wooded slats, some of the are even missing, as you can see.
Those trees held so many memories of my dad barbequing for us all and the shade they provided year round, I could feel my dad frowning at me from Heaven, but I'm sure he would have done the same thing. I thought about digging out the parts of the root that were causing the damage but several tree removal services that came out to give me quotes assured me the trees would die. There was no other choice.
So my gardener Oscar gave me the lowest quote and he showed up on Saturday and I was shocked to learn that he had not brought a cherry picker or a bucket truck which is how I assumed they would take the trees down, start from the top and cut down.
Nope, what they did was to use a chain saw starting at the bottom, letting the trees just crash down onto the street! I don't know how they estimated which way the trees would fall or how they knew they would not hit my neighbors fence across the street, but they brought the trees down successfully.
Once the tree was down they quickly cut all the branches off, hurrying as it was blocking the street, then they cut the trunk into pieces that were just barely small enough for them to physically lift! Once all that was done, they use a stump grinder like the one shown below, to remove the the stump and grind the roots. And bing-bang in about 3 hours those trees were gone!
Here's a picture my sister Lisa took from her car parked across the street. You can see the remaining two trees on the right of the picture and you can see how badly the fence looks from this angle and how badly the house needs to be painted but never fear, that's next on the list!
Voila! Trees are gone! As sad as I am that the trees had to go it looks so much nicer now! Now I'm just waiting for my fence guys to put up the new fence and I'll share a nice new picture!
Slowly but sure we are giving this old house a facelift. The house was actually built in 1957 and while it's had some fixes here and there, it's not had any actual major remodeling. Cross your fingers I like the end result.