Sunday, April 02, 2006

The Care of Trees

This is kind of a nice segway after yesterday's April Fool's post. In case anyone doesn't know me that well- I am all about plants, trees and birds. A regular snow white some might say-- only I can't sing.

Last weekend we had a great company come out and look at our Picea Orientalis that we planted about 3 years ago. It had been growing well and we had dotted every "i" and crossed every "t" as far as looking after this tree. In case some of you don't know, last year was a very very bad drought in Illinois including the Chicago area. I've seen many a sad unwatered pine tree around the area dead as a doornail.

We watered this tree religiously and also treated it with WiltPruf every summer and winter. Below is a shot of the tree last summer. The photo to the left was just taken.

Sometime around late December, we noticed it had browned a bit (see above)and it didn't look so hot. My Dad suggested we call The Care of Trees and get an evaluation. A Certified Arborist and very nice and knowledgable guy named Allen came out and evaluated all of our trees. He told us that sometimes you can do everything right for a tree, but it's still "up to the tree." Sounds kind of like us humans doesn't it? It made us feel better of course, because we were worried we'd made some mistake that caused the browning.

He told us our tree would probably recover and we did not need to prune the dead ends, they will just drop off and be replaced by new growth. Pine trees are very succeptible to browning in winter because they don't harden off and go dormant. The winds and dry air can cause this.

Allen also told us about an organization we might be interested in looking into. They are called Tree Keepers and they offer a certification class for learning more about trees and soil etc... This is something I'd like to consider doing down the road.

I just thought I'd share this resource. We all know what an incredible presence and old tree is and how long it takes to replace them. I suspect that many of you valuing older homes would be on the same page with regard to old trees as well. How many of you remember climbing trees in your youth? I could tell you a story about me getting stuck in a tree, but I'll save that for another day.


Patricia W said...

Thanks for the post. I'm glad to hear your tree will most likely be fine. I'm a big-time tree lover and hate to see any of them die or have to be cut down.

My house in Texas had seven huge trees in the backyard and five big ones in the front yard. My neighbors used to say my house was in the 'woods' even though the lot was just .20 of an acre.

Maria said...

Hi Jocelyn. How I wish I had your knowledge and enthusiasm for plants. I've so enjoyed reading your journal!

We purchased our house, on almost two acres, just over a year ago and can't identify most of what's growing around here. Not only that, I'd like to just rip most of it out and start from scratch, but it's so overwhelming to think about, I've stalled! Just the thought of planning...well, it's daunting. Any practical suggestions? Liiiiike...close your eyes, snap a finger and VOILA! No? Ok, well, then I would love anything you have to offer! :)

Have a great day!