Tuesday, September 23, 2008

Year of the Landscaping

A while ago on another blog, I told of this year being the year of landscaping. The picture above shows some of what we've done. I did the grunt work of installing the pavers and my wife did the planting of the plants and spreading of mulch. The end result is a very low maintenance flower bed of sorts where weeds don't visit, less lawn to mow which is always a positive, and the best part is that I can run the wheels of the mower on top of the pavers and reduce the weed eating factor. Right now the weed-eating factor is zero and I would like to keep it that way.

But in order to keep it at zero, I have to deal with this. This is a picture of a large tree root from the oak tree out front that is poking up through my lawn. I've moved over the top of it for almost half a decade with no problems and then this spring it decided to leap up and hit the blade of my lawn mower, bending the blade and the crankshaft. Now this doesn't have to be a terminal illness for a lawnmower but when the costs of fixing are as much as a new lawnmower, I told my lawnmower in my best Palin like voice, "Thanks but no thanks." Since lawnmowers were still plentiful, I decided to run the lawnmower until the bearings gave out, the life giving oil drained out, and the engine seized and died. I'm still waiting and hoping it doesn't happen anytime soon since the lawnmowers have long been sent back to factories and their cousin the snow blower is standing in their place. Normally I would be home free but my lawn is still as green as early summer.

I'm not sure how to fix tree roots. I've read burying them under dirt can starve them for oxygen and harm the tree. Besides, even that is but a temporary fix. Cutting them or grinding them also can hurt the tree. So I'm left with perhaps putting stones of some sort around the perimeter of the roots and landscaping it as I have done other parts of my lawn. Perhaps next year if the year of the landscaping continues.

Finally, I leave you with a shot looking up through the branches of an oak tree. It looks like an easy climb but I haven't tried it. I've thought about taking up some sort of antenna with me and installing it in the branches as far up as I can climb giving me the best television reception of anyone around this February when analog television signals are history because in theory, I would have the tallest antenna around. I've found plenty of sites of people installing ham radio antennas BETWEEN trees but none of people installing an antenna IN a tree. So for now, I just ponder the possibility.


Murf said...

That's quite the oak tree you have. I have seen some people attach their satellite dish to a tree. I think you should look into building a treehouse.

The Real Mother Hen said...

Hey you know, I've the same plants (the blue flower plants) that you have in the first picture, but mine didn't grow well at all... maybe I'll need to move it from the pot to the ground? On the other hand, my sage (the herb type) has gone wild without any attention and watering. Sage has these tiny little blue/ purple flowers and the smell is just lovely.

Murf suggested Tree house, that's a good idea.

Murf said...

The herb type of sage sounds just like the human Sage although I can't comment on his smell since I haven't experienced it but I doubt he smells lovely wearing that infamous hat and out in the wilderness with his buddies.

sage said...

Nice lawn work there Ed.

Murf, I took a bath every day but one out there in the wilderness... and my hat, well it wards off mosquitoes :)

Ed Abbey said...

Murf - Since this tree is in my front yard facing the Lawn Nazi's place, I'm sure he would frown upon a treehouse. In fact it would give him many nights of severe heartburn. I'll start on it this weekend. :)

Mother Hen - My wife is always trying to raise plants in pots. I guess they do that more often in asian countries but over here, they just never seem to do well. Once I get her to stick'em in the ground, they really go to town.

Murf - No matter how good Sage smells, the herb smells better in my opinion.

Sage - Murf just doesn't understand what it is like out in the wilderness.

Saur♥Kraut said...

Beautiful! I've been doing some, myself. Don't worry too much about tree roots. From what I've seen, there isn't much of a problem either covering OR cutting them, in general. They adapt.

BTW, I see your blog has the same problem mine does. When I click on 'comments', I get both a new screen AND a pop up. That's why I switched my comments to take away the pop up screen - too many complications. Any idea what's happening?

Ed Abbey said...

It must be something to do with your browser as I don't have that problem. I use Internet Explorer and it has an option to prevent pop-ups.

Anyone else have that problem reading my comments?

The Real Mother Hen said...

Haha, we Asians have them on pot because land is precious :) Here in OR, I've a zero-lot house, which means I've only a tiny mini patch of "dirt" :) I think you're right on the pot vs the ground part. I also have the plants facing south, which means plenty of sunshine and no shade, that may be a bad idea too. Ah, looks like I have to rearrange stuff in my patch of dirt soon :)

Beau said...

Those cobblestones are very nice- I need to do something like that. But the oak tree! I can see a perfect tree house up there somewhere... is it in the backyard? I want to build a little treehouse somewhere, but haven't found the right tree. Yours is great!

Ron said...

That's a heck of a tree... I've been thinking about mounting our antennae up in a tree, too, in preparation for Feb.

I enjoyed your recent posts. I've been so buried in reading about the economy lately that I have not done much else. Your boat looked very beautiful.