Monday, May 21, 2012

Clearing the Forest

Well alright, so its not really a forest in our backyard...but it sure does feel like it sometimes! About 4 or 5 years ago I planted 4 cotton-less Cottonwood trees in our backyard. THEY GREW LIKE CRAZY. I really did bury them the depth I was instructed to do and have enjoyed watching them sprout up like they have. They are all close to, if not over, 30 feet tall.

Well, we also had a concrete patio poured in our backyard just before I had planted these trees. See now, this is where it gets a bit irritating to me. They say not to plant trees within 30ft of your house...and this was barely on the line...but for some reason the notion that a cottonwood would grow to be GINORMOUS somehow missed my train of thought as I dug my tree's designated hole. I knew we were headed for trouble LAST summer when my patio was already cracking from the roots of one particular tree. GRRRRR.
But we strategically placed our trailer over it and 'hid' it for the winter (because if I put something over it, in my world, it should go away...because it has never happened before, but there's always gotta be a first...right?). Sadly the one bad thing is that by hiding it we were able to ignore what we just found last week...THE ROOTS CRACKED AND RAISED OUR CONCRETE BY 7 INCHES...UGH!

Again, not sure why I was thick enough not to assume it would happen to us. I think therein lies human nature...this idea that 'it won't happen to me/us.' Doesn't matter how many darn times we are proved wrong over and over again...slapped with reality that YES IT DOES HAPPEN TO ME, we still behave and continue on as though we never learned it the very first time. HELLO!? DUH!? Well as we rolled our trailer off the lifted area, horror struck as we realized, yep...gotta cut down this tree. So, again...UGH.

This tree...has a 43 inch circumference, standing well over 30ft tall. Its also GREEN...therefore wet and difficult to cut down. I'm mentally going back in time when I was deciding where to put this tree and slapping myself...a total high-five to the face. WOW. This tree took a massive hit last fall when CO was pounded by that ice and snow storm in October 2011. All of our cottonwoods did, but this particular tree seems to have taken the brunt of most of it. I also realized, as I was contemplating how much work this was going to be, that this tree provides afternoon shade across my grass...(LOL right now its basically dirt, but I believe it has great potential to be grass...again). SO SAD. Why is this tree such a big deal? I'm not sure...really I don't know why it bothers me so much to cut down a tree? My kids LOVED climbing all over this tree...and it happened to be where a robin laid that eggs that the Lord used to confirm my doubts when we were in the dreaded waiting process for our son's adoption. *sigh* Well, either way that tree is DOWN and waiting to be cut up into pieces so that we can haul it away next week. UGH, this is when I'd love to live in the Jetson's time and have a robot or something to clean it up for me. LOL

here is Duncan NOT helping...
the girls with the main root that cracked our concrete

So as Rob began cutting this horrid tree down it occurred to me that it was going to be a HUGE mess...and I got to be apart of the cleanup crew...along with all the children. ;) Hey, its good for them. I remember every Mothers Day and Fathers Day (well any weekend really) being a huge yard work day...and my brothers and I HATED it. And for some reason my parents actually ENJOYED doing this...yard work and torturing us poor children. Now that I am the parent, I realize why they did this: CHEAP LABOR. Its like dog poop duty...excellent form of discipline and gets a job done that I really don't want to do. I've also come to realize that I do, in fact, enjoy yard work. Its like my instant gratification...minus the grass growing part...(apparently you have to actually WATER grass for it to grow. I know right? Weird!?)

We also had a TON of branches that still had to be disposed of as well as our sad swingset that was demolished by our trampoline when 65mph winds picked up our tramp and blew it into our swingset the week before we went to get Josh. Byebye swingset and byebye old trampoline. GRRRR...

Josh decided cleanup meant 'nap'

And this tree project just seems to LINGER on forever. BUT we did get most of it done. I was seriously surprised by the root system of this cottonwood tree! The roots not only cracked our concrete, they continued on clear under the next portion of our pad and had lifted it by an inch or so! We did learn, however, that putting RoundUp on the root end would kill the root. So we doused those suckers and eventually the pad will go back down once the roots flatten out. Getting the two pieces back into place was an adventure though...but it was such a relief to finally see it back to how its supposed to look...except for the huge cracks, which we'll use a sealant much better though!

Now the stump and the irritating roots that went into our neighbors landscape was another adventure. The roots had actually grown THROUGH the wire! Here is Rob cutting wire OUT of the root...RIDICULOUS.


So that is the end of the on to rediscovering our grass...

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