Thursday, December 27, 2007

Garden changes

This fall we noticed that another of our pine trees had died. I am fairly certain that the pine bark beetle struck again. At one time we had a row of white pine trees running down the length of the NW side of our garden. There are only two of them left. It has been nice to have these trees. They have shaded our patio and a good portion of our back yard. As you can see from the picture this is beginning to open up with only two trees left. We probably should have taken down the other two as well but I just couldn't bring myself to say it to the tree removal man. I like the pine needles for mulching under the hydrangeas, lining the path that goes to my work area. It most likely won't be long until I won't have that option.

On the up side of this situation is that I will have more area to plant. I will have this big stump to deal with for some time. However pine is a soft wood, this stump will probably rot out fairly quick. The Ash tree that is in this area will probably fill out better to provide enough shade for our patio.

It is sort of exciting to think I might have enough light to try some plants that have not been able to grow in this dense shade. Hmmmmm..... Some fun winter dreamin' about to commence.


  1. oh dear, I am sorry about the tree.
    did you check for the tell tale holes that the beetle leaves?
    I lost one of my big spruce, (husband and wife trees) last year to that terrible destructive pest. We found the sawdust at the base of the tree ...and there were times that you could hear the larvae munching...ech!

  2. Dear Lisa,
    Always sad to loose a tree. I do understand how a garden changes. Mine also have done so! Having a new spot to plan and plant will be fun.
    Looking forward to seeing what gloroius plantings you decide on.
    Glad to know you had a nice Christmas.

  3. I just picked up a book on trees.-I would really like to know all of the trees in my area as to help with my birding skills.-It's nice to have Pine.-I love walking through the woods on a soft carpet of pine.

  4. Possibilities! Hmmmm Lucky you!
    I know you loved those white pine but there are so many nicer trees!

  5. It's scary, isn't it, how many nasty pests are out there! I am worried about the emerald ash borer heading this way; it's devastated ash trees around Windsor, ON, and surrounding environs (probably in the States too); another 'imported' pest compliments of 'free trade!'
    The only good thing about a tree dying is, as you note, the opportunity to make new changes. It'll be fun to see what you do!

  6. So sorry for your loss. We have a stand of loblolly pines that so far have survived while neighboring trees succumbed to the beetle, mostly in 2000. They could go anytime though. You will plant something wonderful in their place, I am sure.

  7. Oh yes, it's sad to lose a lovely big tree. I can empathize. A few years ago we had to cut down one of our huge old maples in the front yard. On the positive side, it did open up possibilities, as you say. The other maple will one day have to go too. I just can't imagine the yard without it! It provides a haven for so many birds. We'll have to get planting!

  8. Yes Cyndy, we have seen the holes and actually have seen the beetles. Sometimes during the summer we put a sheet up and turn on a black light. Bugs come to the sheet and we try to ID them. We have seen many pine bark beetles. On another tree that came down we could see the lines they make on the tree trunk just under the bark.

    Yes Sherry I am looking forward to doing something in this spot.

    I love the smell of the pines and the feel of the needle cushion underfoot when walking too Larry.

    Yes Layanee, there are more and even prettier possibilities for this area. It was just that I get attached to plants when they have been around for so long. These trees were here before I arrived on the scene.

    Hi Jodi. Those Beetles are horrible pests. I cringe when I think of all those gorgeous pines in Maine (and other states) that I have seen and wonder about the devastation they could wreak there. We have an Ash tree too. I have wondered about it and the Emerald Ash Borer too. I guess only time will tell.

    Yes Frances, It is amazing how the trees are seemingly healthy and poof they turn brown. A very sinking feeling to see this. I hope your Loblollys survive. I am looking forward to planting something there. I just don't know what as yet.

    Yes Kerri, I can't wait to do something. Actually I can't wait for the idea to come into my head as to what I should plant there.

  9. That is such a bummer ... it's heart breaking when tall, old trees die off. I guess the best thing is to think of what you can plant in their place.

    Dutch Elm disease devastated our beautiful old Elm trees and we are all now constantly vigilant about watching for diseased trees.

  10. Lisa,

    I remember your post on window boxes and I plan to hang a few on the west side of my house next Spring. Yours are so pretty and you really have a decorative way with them!

    Sorry about that tree. We have lost two during our drought. A magnolia and a Japanese willow. The willow was beautiful but it went fast.

  11. Kate, it is sad to lose a tree. I am looking at it as an opportunity. :/

    Mary, I can just imagine how quick a willow would go in a drought.

  12. I guess that's part of a garden's evolution--sun to shade and eventually back to sun again. Maybe your other trees will stay healthy for a while longer.


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