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.


Spindletree Books, our publishing logo, a Cliff design






How have you tidied up this spring?

Do you have “tidy” plans?