Marie Kondo must have waved her magic wand over our live oak trees last week. The Tidying Up maven Marie specializes in tidy tricks indoors.
Still, I think she would approve of outdoor maintenance, which happened on our property last Tuesday.
A weak sun peers through dense trees before the pruning.
An expert trimmer cradled in a harness attached to the tree used a chain saw to lop off branches. A few times he sailed out on his harness and nipped the tree to make a cut on his way back to the trunk, mimicking a monkey.
Picking up the pieces
Tree debris hauled away
A Clear View
Live oaks abound in Northeast Florida. Great curtains of moss often hang in luxuriant folds from older oaks. Usually they live hundreds of years and stand up to a mild or moderate hurricane. Our tree surgeon says it’s wise to trim oaks because hurricane winds could blow through the trees without toppling them.
Our tree trimmer has an ideal name for his business:
Carl Countryman from Big Branch Road
Palm Tree Promise
The righteous shall flourish like the palm tree: he shall grow like a cedar in Lebanon. Those that be planted in the house of the LORD shall flourish in the courts of our God. They shall still bring forth fruit in old age; they shall be fat (fresh) and flourishing, full of sap and green. ~ Psalm 92:12-14
A ‘good enough family gives us a shelterbelt, a circle of tall trees that protects us from the cold and wind. Over time, some of these trees die, and the tree line thins for a while. Then, we become the old trees. New trees pop up and grow to protect children who we may never meet. ~ Mary Pipher, Women Rowing North 2019
The spindle tree, native to the United Kingdom, is identifiable with bouffant foliage, flaring brilliant crimson in the fall. Birds are attracted to seed pods from the trees and tend to spread seeds freely.
How have you tidied up this spring?
Do you have “tidy” plans?
Yes, we plan to take down a huge Leyland that’s taken over the side of your house. That palm tree is magnificent! Love the book logo…well done, Cliff!
Thank you, Jill, for being the conversation starter again today. I was curious about a Leyland and googled it to discover it’s a type of cypress: https://www.google.com/search?q=image+tree+%22leyland%22&lr=&as_qdr=all&tbm=isch&source=iu&ictx=1&fir=Omwqw5n-RCDMcM%253A%252CG59jbCqREDxDXM%252C_&vet=1&usg=AI4_-kRuu7LHkfFRoWd6n5pWOkXZndqo_w&sa=X&ved=2ahUKEwjUxdPD35DhAhUEwlkKHXenBGgQ9QEwAnoECAgQCA#imgrc=Omwqw5n-RCDMcM:
I glad you enjoyed the palm tree, in our neighborhood but not on our property.
Of course, our Leyland isn’t so large that it’s reaching your house in Florida! Sorry for the typo. The trees are often planted to create privacy, but this one has gotten out of control. I’d love to get a palm tree for our yard. A few neighbors have them, but as you know, you don’t see many in the Charlotte area.
Good morning, Marian! Though I’m a big fan of oaks, and love the big old oak in our back yard, that palm tree is impressive! Our yard is in big need of tidying. Perhaps Sunday, when we’re supposed to have spring weather.
Congratulations on your beautiful logo!
Happy spring! I hope you and Doug have sunny, warm weather when your work outside. I’m guessing we’ll hear about the experience in your Monday Musings. I’m glad you like the logo. Thanks, Merril!
I hope you’ll enjoy many happy hours of glorious sunshine now. We once had our cherry tree pruned and it made a tremendous difference to the amount of light in our and our neighbours’ back gardens. Unfortunately, we don’t have a garden at the moment and that is one thing I truly miss.
You probably find gardens wherever you travel these days, although I know you miss your own space. I love cherry trees too. Their blossoms are magical. Thanks, Fatima!
I meant that I miss working in my own garden and tending my plants and seeing our regular birds.
Yes, of course. I get it! Thanks, Fatima. 🙂
Beautiful logo. Easy to understand and see. Our spring clean-up plans are me waiting for the garden nursery crew to get here and do it for us. It’s our one big extravagance when it comes to gardening. They get us started, we take it from there.
You are smart to invest in your garden. What a boost to have a nursery crew to get you started this spring. I see another blog post coming down the pike, Ally! 🙂
Spring begins today. Tidying up begins April 1 when I’m retired!! I am very anxious to get there. I’m checking things off my list, and will soon begin my “home” list. I love your shot of the “monkey” in the tree. Some tree trimmers are amazing. We hired one who swung through the trees–and drank in between. Not lemonade or tea, the other stronger stuff. We were a little worried, but all went well.
Our life long friend Charles was a tree trimmer in central Florida for awhile. He did hurt his leg, it had to be made into a stiff knee (couldn’t bend it), as knee surgeries weren’t so common back in the late 50s or early 60s. I had to think of Charles (now deceased 8 months ago) when I saw your photo. And yes, nice logo!
Only 10 more days till the Big R, fewer if you subtract the weekend. I’s so happy for you!
Thanks, Melodie, for appearing here during your busy, busy days. And for inserting anecdotes about the tipsy tree trimmer and your friend Charles.
I cleaned up the itty bitty tiny backyard to the condo last week. The succulents and weeds alike are growing well from all of the this Winter’s rains, the multiple hues of green are a colorful relief from the brick wall.
I enjoy reading your descriptive comments, Ginger. You are great at noticing shades of green, very noticeable now with the chartreuse leaves pushing out here in NE Florida. Thank you!
Marian — Your trees look lush and inviting. Your Cliff-designed logo, even more so. Wow!
You LOVE the outdoors too. I’m glad you approve the the natural and the artistic here. Thanks, Laurie!
Wow! Love your photos. So nice to see green leaves and grass. Everything is yellowish brown and gray here, Marian. I was noticing the grass the other day as I drove. The trees look shocked. The weather goes from the 40s to the 20s.
Here’s hoping your weather will soon match the date on the calendar today. Happy spring, whenever it arrives, weather-wise. Thanks, L. Marie!
Good morning, Marian. The logo is perfect! We’re outside this week soaking up the spring sunshine. Gerry is tidying up in the garage and my thoughts are in the garden. We stopped by the community garden earlier this week and see signs of things waking up. Also, most welcome, a large weeping willow that shaded my plot in the mornings has been severely cut back. Woo hoo!
I like the idea of nature waking up. The willow tree sounds enchanting. As you know, I grew up with one in my Grandma’s back yard. I miss it!. Yours will fill in soon with fresh fronds. Thanks, Linda.
The weather here has been wonderful for the last week and my fingers are itching to get dirty in the garden. But I still can’t do too much because my shoulder is still healing. Alas, I’ll just have to do it later and if I get really crazed I’ll go to one of my favorite nurseries and sit among the plants!
Oh, goodness, Joan. I don’t think you’ll go crazy. Today is the first day of spring, and with a few hiccups, we’re heading toward warm and sunny. All best to you as you recover!
A magnificent palm, Marian of which we have many here as you would guess just not in my garden at the moment….Hubby has removed a tree completely( himself) It took him a few weeks…Don’t ask and now he is redoing the lawn ….As long as he leaves my orchids I just let him be ..Love the logo…Well done Cliff 🙂
Thailand is THE place for the exotic. I have a few orchids, some blooming intermittently. The one that had 28 blossoms last year is doing a repeat performance on my bathroom windowsill. I’m glad your hubby was unharmed removing your tree, a tricky business. Thanks, Carol!
Well, autumn is our season right now Marian. Your photos are gorgeous! Sadly a borer beetle (it’s a fungus)has infected 1000’s of trees in South Africa and they have to be cut down and disposed of.
It’s awesome to me that our planet is big enough to contain four different seasons simultaneously. (I hope I’m right!) And I hope the tree-planting society is hard at work planning to plant more trees. So sad! I remember the Dutch Elm blight in our country, such a waste.
Thanks for greeting us from South Africa today, Susan. 🙂
Marie Kondo is certainly making the blogging rounds today, Marian. Congratulations on the book company logo. Nice tie in with the trees. I’m eager to hear how you’ll use the logo. Will you be taking on other books? Will it go on Cliffs books too, as well as your upcoming memoir? Do tell.
Our outdoor cleanup begins in May and continues into September. We have thirty acres. Woody cuts all our firewood himself plus we need to keep certain areas thinned, the deciduous trees — mostly wild apples — need “releasing” which only means we must give them some room to grow. And in bigger stead, we take out the fuviduous so the fir can get a life.
Your oak tree is truly magnificent. We have three oak tres currently, all of them planted by yours truly. I count that as one of the upsides of climate change. Northern Vermont has historically been too cold for oak trees. Alas, they can grow here now. They just need a little help moving north. I’ll be planting three more this year.
Thanks for your inquiry about the book logo. We hope to use it on my memoir and then possibly on a children’s book about the oak the great-grands planted when Grandma L. died. It would be an expansion on a blog post from Long ago. Big plans, but we can always dream.
Bravo to you and Woody for stewarding 30 acres. That’s a tree farm … or a small forest. You are the Johnny Appleseed of oaks and more. I looked up ” fuviduous” and couldn’t find anything. It you intended “deciduous, I will make the change on my end.
Thanks for all this enlightenment, Janet!
“And in bigger stead, we take out the fuviduous so the fir can get a life.”. And in other areas, we take out the deciduous so the fir can get a life.” (Though I like thinking “fuvidous” is native to Vermont, very new.). Thanks; I hadn’t seen it sneak in.
Love your publishing logo, Marian! There is so much symbolism in trees!
We had our big maple tree trimmed last year. It’s quite the procedure.
You can sympathize with the procedure – and the expense. However, tree services have the tools and expertise to do the job right. I’m glad you approve of the publishing logo. Thanks, Elfrieda!
I thought I had left a comment earlier, Marian. Don’t see it, so i guess I just imagined I did. I note the plural on your lovely book publishing logo! I had to look up Spindle Tree. Will you tell us the origin story? https://stock.adobe.com/ee/search?k=spindle+tree
Last question first: Spindle Tree names our neighborhood. We liked the sound of it, and books (the kind I prefer holding) are made from trees, so there you go.
The plural represents a dream right now. Cliff and I are thinking of working on a children’s book adapted from an older blog post. He has experience with previous books, so maybe . . . . I have to get the memoir off the ground first. And then I want to take a breather! Thanks for asking, Shirley. 🙂
The first tree, in your post, is a huge tree! Your pictures are great and I love your logo! I love trees and living in the woods, it’s a good thing I do! As soon as our snow is all gone I’ll be out picking up all the twigs and branches in our yard. It’ll take many wheel barrow loads to clear our yard! Thanks for sharing, Marian!
I’m thrilled to see you here again, Anita. Lately I have been wondering about the “Gutenberg” gremlin you were dealing with earlier this year.
Almost every day I pick up twigs and branches in our backyard. If we’ve had high winds, I pull a bin around with me for the debris. If it’s just a few, then I throw them into the woods. Thanks for joining the conversation here, Anita, so appreciated. 🙂
Marian, Congratulations on creating your own imprint. Trees carry much meaning for writer and reader so it is an apt symbol. I wrote about a tree I had taken down last winter and the moments of my life it had “witnessed.” Now, nothing there but open sky. As for tidying up, writing does, yes? It allows us to bring clarity to our thoughts and what Virginia Woolf called “those moments of being.”
Thank you for your thoughtful comment, Susan. My book is not yet published, but every day I am grateful for the preface you wrote (It might have a different name now) and for naming some of the chapters – in short, your deep developmental edit. Spindletree is the name of our neighborhood and the bouffant foliage shows fruitfulness, an apt image, I hope. Thanks again for adding your wisdom to this conversation. 🙂
That live oak is gorgeous! Nice photos. I don’t know if you have ever read the book “The Overstory”, but your logo and post reminded me of this wonderful book.
And…I live in Lancaster County and just returned from a visit to my sister in Northeast Florida.
Welcome, Laurie. Thanks for the book title. I have not read Overstory, but your suggestion makes me curious. I left you a message on your contact page.
Again, thanks for joining the conversation here.
Love your logo Marian. And that first photo with the sun peering through the tree was stunning. 🙂
I’m glad you approve. My artist-in-residence spent many hours getting just the right colors, curves and fonts. About the photo: lucky shot taken, I believe, just before the guys got into action.
Always glad to see you here, Debby! 😀
Love your logo! And the shots of your trees! Still enjoying minus temperatures here…
Isn’t every little boy’s dream to climb trees? Mine does it for a living…only around highways and hydro wires. Guess who I’m taking to climb trees with me this summer? The tree looks great! Can’t wait for Spring.
I’m glad this post hit the spot for you and pulled out an image and some anticipation. May spring find you soon in your part of the world, Jenn! 🙂
I LOVE tidying up, and that’s a good thing or our 19ft living space would have no space. 🙂 Since the world is our yard, we don’t have to tidy up the outside. But, we have a house sit planned in the beginning of April and that will be the perfect time for a Zesty spring cleaning. 🙂 Trimming trees means more sunlight in the garden, so I hope that makes your winter a tad warmer, Marian. Or, maybe northern Florida has been spared from the much colder than usual winter time.
I wonder where you are house sitting … probably time to catch up on your blog posts. Yes, I wish for more sunlight for each of us. Thanks, Liesbet!
Not house sitting right now, but traveling in Arizona in our camper. Still cold as we are above 5,000ft. Our upcoming house sit is a repeat sit in Albuquerque, NM with the “cactus” dogs. 🙂 That will be for five weeks in April.
It seems as though a repeat sit would be a good gig: familiar hosts and pets. I’m glad April in taken care of for you and stationed in a place where you can spread out. I wonder if you feel that way too.
Thanks for the update, Liesbet!
Oh, I didn’t mention anything about your cool logo. Is that a necessity when self-publishing? To create your own publishing “business” and logo?
I’m sure that you don’t have to have a logo when self-publishing. Cliff can’t help designing stuff. He’s an artist and loves to create. Please don’t put LOGO on your to-do list – ha!
It won’t go on the to-do list! 🙂
I adore trees and hate them to be cut down but I’m all for a little spring cleaning . I have never heard of the spindle tree , you can be sure I’ll look it up . I love the logo , so super talented is your lovely hubby .
Mmmm you’ve reminded me I must get Maria Kondo’s book .
Cherry, if you look at my reply to Shirley Showalter, I explain about the spindle tree and why it’s in our logo. I love trees too and associate them with wandering in the woods at Grandma’s house. They seem sacred to me in a way, and I too hate to see them cut down. Let me know what you think about Marie Kondo’s book. In the States, she has a TV program about Tidying Up. oxo
I love the logo! I am sure you will enjoy the extra sunshine and the tree will be happy to have lost a few pounds. We have a palm tree in our yard and I love it. It has to be trimmed twice a year. The more we trim it, the taller it gets. They are not indigenous to Spain but were brought over from Africa by the Moors a long time ago and are seen everywhere here.
How expressive you are: “the tree will be happy to have lost a few pounds.” Florida has lots of palms too of all sizes. My daughter had to hire a trimmer to get rid of lots of dead fronds on a tree that looks to be 50 feet high. Thanks for your approval on the logo and the bit of tree history too, Darlene!
I love your logo. It’s good to have Cliff on your team. What a skillful tree trimming job. I have a wide and tall border of spruce and fir trees on the north side of my house and no trees to the east, south, and west to keep the sunset views open. I don’t trim much. I always have tidying up plans and, invariably, something intervenes. This winter it was surgery and learning to hear again which is more important that dealing with my piles and getting books to the library book sale to make room for new books that show up. (Who’s the woman who keeps buying new books?)
It felt like spring a few days ago here, but it snowed a few inches last night and such is March in western NY. We’re way behind on outdoor projects and I’m contemplating skipping a large vegetable garden, joining a CSA a few miles away, and only growing tender lettuce in a growing box my son is building and maintaining my two domesticated flower beds for the Monarchs, bees, and me. What I say I’m going to do when there’s snow on the ground and what I actually do when the ground warms won’t necessarily match.
You are a wise woman. A crone, perhaps? I think trimming your garden to a doable size sounds reasonable. You are still recovering your equilibrium besides leading a workshop in April or May. Of course, you can’t do without Monarchs and bees, so the flower beds are probably an investment in mental health. Maybe Anthony can help. Or David.
Tree trimming for us is both for aestethics and a prep for hurricane season. Trees are less likely to fall in high winds if they are “airy”! I always appreciate your thoughtful comments and feel honored that you take the time to converse here. Blessings, Elaine!