I have been eyeing up the large trees at the back of our property. I have been wanting to get rid of the tall, yellow, columnar conifer for a while. We got rid of its ailing sibling close to the garage a while back as it was small enough for The Husband to cut down. This one is much taller though, so we need a professional to fell it. It doesn’t look right standing right beside the neighbour’s fence in a raised garden bed, and even less so since ivy has started to take it over.
In addition to felling the slim conifer, I was thinking about getting an arborist to prune some of the branches of the very large tree nearby. It is a cedar tree, Cedrus deodara or Himalayan Cedar I think. Why it was planted so close to the garage on a raised level I don’t know. Apparently they can get to over 20m high and up to 12m wide. I like this tree. I have a deep attraction to needle-leaved conifers and this is a pleasant-looking specimen. I also like the way it drops scented needles all over the ground underneath it. And it produces pine cones which can be burnt in the fire. A couple of the branches are overhanging the garage and it is those that I thought to get pruned. But there are also branches overhanging the chicken run and neighbour’s place that ought to be pruned too. The tree has very wide, slightly drooping branches. And then there is the ivy.
The Husband is going to be stuck with the job of getting rid of the ivy from the massive cedar tree. The ivy is smothering it too and sending forth little seedlings everywhere. I’m going to start having ivy nightmares soon. I wouldn’t have let it get so bad if it didn’t give me an allergic skin rash. I seem to be ok pulling out small bits of ivy with gloves on, wearing long sleeves and pants and trying not to touch the leaves, but I have to be careful as repeated exposure to it on my skin could make the reaction worse. And thus, I dare not clamber around in ivy or deal with it up high where it could swing around wildly and attack me. I am scared of it, and I’m not ashamed to admit it! I would actually like to climb the tree to rip the ivy down, I think it could be quite cathartic, but alas, I will have to convince The Husband that this is a fun activity he can try.
Or, the alternative, which just occurred to me yesterday as I gazed out the window. We could get the tree felled. One ivy-laden branch came down earlier this year and it made a big crash. Maybe we should just remove the potential danger. I have been weighing up the pros and cons. Let’s make a pro-con list!
- Removes danger of tree or branches falling on garage, fences, chickens, neighbour’s place, etc.
- Won’t have to pay for regular pruning to keep branches under control.
- Won’t have to convince The Husband to do horrible, procrastinatory job of ivy removal from all over tree.
- Gives us big stash of firewood.
- Big trunk could be cut into rounds to make stepping stones.
- Could plant a smaller conifer tree (or a couple) to replace it.
- View wouldn’t be very nice with pretty tree gone.
- No more scented, needle mulch on the ground near tree.
- May make garden more exposed.
- Could be very expensive.
I’m just going to stop right there as I think I have my answer. Most of the cons can be addressed by planting a new, smaller conifer tree or two. I was already planning to plant a couple of small ones on the ground in front of the big cedar for more of a forest-ey look, so I am well underway with the research anyway. The only problem is the cost. I know arborist jobs are expensive but I have no idea how much it would cost to remove both these trees. And maybe a few of the jolly stumps around here. Well, there’s only one thing for it: get a quote. There is a company that has been recommended by people in the area so I will start with them. To tree or not to tree? It’s a tricky question.