Arbor day, redux

by Chuck May 3, 2009

We accidentally planted some more trees today.

Not accidentally, per se. It wasn't an accident to plant them, but buying them and putting them in was a spur of the moment sort of thing.

Early on Sunday morning I started digging out the trenches where we are putting the pier blocks for the deck. Dana came out, saw me digging, and said "We need to rent a tool." We rented a little Kubota excavator for the day, 8 hours of engine time in a 24 hour period. Since we only had an hour or so of digging for the patio, we looked around and said, "What else can we use a digger for?"

We came up with three things. Digging in a water line from the hose bib in the middle of the front to the chip shed, digging in an electrical line to the front gate, and digging the holes for the trees. Two of the projects meant leaving ditches across part of the place for a while; putting in the trees seemed like a one-time use of the digger. So that's what we did.

I waited for the excavator to be delivered. Dana headed down to Woods Creek Nursery to buy flowering plum trees. You remember a couple of weeks ago when we planted a flowering plum we bought the smaller trees? This time they didn't have smaller trees, we ended up with three enormous (20-feet tall) flowering plums to plant along the driveway.

Digging the holes with an excavator was easy. I loaded the dirt into the back of the truck and Joey and I unloaded it into the stock pile that I'm building over next to the compost bins. Last time when I planted a tree I used the tractor to mix dirt and compost, and then to haul the mixture to the planting hole. This time I moved one load, and then the front left tire on the tractor blew out. We ended up moving compost the old fashioned way -- shoveling it into the truck and then shoveling it back out.

Putting the trees in the holes was harder than we expected, but in the end we had the three trees planted along the driveway. It looks kinda elegant, the tree-lined driveway up to our house. It's a look that I really like, it's gonna be nice each spring when the trees flower.



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