Thursday, April 2, 2009

Of Trees and Ice Storms

just spent the last two days trying to salvage something out of the mess that last winter's ice storm left us. The biggest casualty was this tree (seen here in fall mode) which split at the base, and having a brittle kind of wood--much like sumac--lost several of the branches that arched out over half the lawn. Last year we measured it (this is, by the way, a hybrid Chestnut tree) as having a branch span of 38' and it was about that tall as well. Much of that has gone.
Im still deciding what to do about it, since a few of the upright branches are still whole, but I don't want it to look like a hack job--Im thinking, cut off the broken stuff, and prune whats left into a decent symmetry and let it fill in as it will.
This is a Chinese Chestnut/American Chestnut cross, developed by a botanist neighbor, Elwyn Meader, some years ago. He gave anyone who would take them as many of these as they wanted, in the hopes of rejuvenating the chestnut tree in new england. It has grown and thrived here for nearly 25 years, and Im hoping it thrives, in one shape or another, for a hundred more...
The druid in me weeps, the optimist knows it will come back.

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