The Garden Community for Garden Lovers

Volume 3...Starting to Work

Lori

By Lori

39 comments


The temperatures have been quite cold because of a strong NE wind and decided to wait for today to start work because the trees were groaning. High winds will loosen dead branches. I could hear branches rubbing together…and when I looked above my head about 5 metres there were a number of them caught between two large trees… Last evening, when talking to my sister, she reminded me that they were called “widow makers” …I just knew that it would be better to wait for the wind to die down.
Early this morning I dressed up warm and set out with my axe to begin a cleanup in two areas of the bush. The first is just behind the house…where some work had been done and some very large trees removed not very long ago. The second area is the Hemlock grove.
I worked for a while collecting deadfall and bringing it to the side of the main path, to be collected and brought down to the shed. Then I decided to move deeper into the centre of the lot and check out the grove. That was where I spent most of the morning.
Very little snow penetrates the canopy of needles…and they filter the light as well… it seems dark under there.
Because they are so closely knit the trees have formed a canopy and all the lower branches are dead and crisp. I found a dozen or so trees that had reached 6 ft or so…and then died. They were very dry and I could twist them out without using my axe. It wasn’t long until I had three piles of deadfall and the thicket was an even more lovely spot because it was easier to walk under the canopy. I stopped to take a rest and heard a whirrr above my head…keeping as still as I could I only moved my eyes to see above my head …about 6 inches away, on a branch, a curious chickadee was checking me out!
I watched them making trips from the feeding station near the house to the grove…They were stashing sunflower seeds in the branch axils…lol. Wonder if any of those seeds might fall to the ground and germinate?


The blue jays have discovered the feeder and were also making trips back and forth between the bush and the feeder. The chickadees try their best to ignore the brash bluejays, but they make sure there is a respectful distance when feeding. It’s comical to watch the ’jays, putting on false aggression, and trying to intimidate each other to get the best spot on the feeder! I even saw one trying to perch on the silo feeder…it took some flapping and flipping but he managed to get himself a sunflower seed!


Beside the Hemlock grove there is a huge senior Hemlock (Tsuga canadensis) …I think the source of the grove itself..and it was so tall that I had to crouch to get a root-to-top picture. They are a magestic species.

One of the large trees not very far from the house has a dead top and the pileated woodpeckers are enjoying a feast. I started clearing out early and by one p.m. I was all in…stumbled down to the house and ate my lunch ranvenously. Instead of curlng up for a nap I packed up my camera and headed back up the trail. I have been hoping to see the large pileated woodpeckers…I knew they were there because I had seen their work! When I reached the middle of the slope I was surprised to see (and hear!) a woodpecker at work on the top branches of an aspen, not 40 ft away! Trying not to be obtrusive I started snapping away. Tried the zoom on my new camera but found that I was just too shakey for that! The sun was coming from behind and I was sure I would never get a decent shot so after a few I tried circling around to get behind the tree…I suppose I disturbed him because he gave a couple of squawks and drummed a little more…then flew away!


My camera is not good in the cold and the batteries fail in no time…but I continued on up the hill to find the two lovely birch trees that I wanted to include in the blog.
The first is a young and healthy golden birch…the second was a derelict paper birch (white birch) that has two lovely fungi growing on it.


With snow on the ground, the gaps in the trees can give hints to where to locate paths…There is also plenty of rock around…I really need to eat my Wheaties! There is going to be so much more to do come spring!

More blog posts by Lori

Previous post: Second trip to the top...

Next post: I'm waiting...



Comments

 

as always an intriguing blog and lovely pictures ~ many thanks lori. lovely to follow your forest adventures

11 Feb, 2011

 

agree with sticki lori ............. interesting , keep it comeing . love the birds . have you drawn plans of wot you want to do !!!

11 Feb, 2011

 

Agree with the girls, its so interesting Lori, loving it.

11 Feb, 2011

 

Goodness, you must have some stamina Lori. But it sounds fascinating even tho I feel exhausted just reading it. Go careful and enjoy yourself. Plenty of wood for the fire! Im off to look up chickadees to see what they are like.

12 Feb, 2011

 

They look very much like our great/coal/marsh tits.

12 Feb, 2011

 

Lots of work there! Opening up little areas between the trees will make quite a difference and maybe eventually bring more species of birds in. Take it easy now! :o)

12 Feb, 2011

 

Wonderful blog Lori, its really interesting following your adventure on your new pastures, I don't know where you get your energy from. How far do you have to travel to get your supplies, because this looks very remote.

12 Feb, 2011

 

Hello friends, the FUN continues! Thanks for the moral support..lol..and yes, I will be pacing myself.
Relative to where we lived before, Littlelegs...yes, it is remote. But we have neighbours who are close (about a quarter of a mile up the road)...and we have two small "convenience" type stores within 15 kms. But to do the real "shopping" we have to drive about 60 kms. to Renfrew. It's a beautiful scenic drive...and it's another 45 minutes to Ottawa.
I'm feeling the results of yesterday...a little stiff and I fell into bed about 8:45 last evening! A good type of exhaustion! As a result I'm sitting here at the computer at 6:30 a.m, getting ready to plan today's tasks. It will be lighter duty today. Time to get out the chainsaw.

12 Feb, 2011

 

Lori....you sound just like the early pioneers and you have bags of energy and ideas. Found your last few blogs really interesting, full of information. It will be such fun to see your property developing into "your space" and to see what is under all that snow once it's melted.

You sure did capture a lot of bluejays...they must be quite a common bird there.

Careful with that chainsaw!

12 Feb, 2011

 

Well done for your satisfying day. Glad you caught Woody Woodpecker, and I love those birch trees. Puts my gardening tasks into perspective!! Phew.

12 Feb, 2011

 

Hello Whistonlass...I can't believe how good the extra exercise makes me feel. At last count there were 8 bluejays on the feeder at once. There are reports in the area of a bald eagle family, jays, waxwings and cardinals... would be nice to see a cardinal.. We were talking to the owner of the local convenience store and he was telling us of coyote and wolf sightings. In fact, a wolf took a deer just about five kms down the Matawatchan road day before yesterday! Yes, I have great respect for the chainsaw... mine is the arborist's size, only a 14" blade. Best advice I ever had was: Always pay attention, and don't work when you're tired.
(good excuse to stop and boil a billycan!)
Sheila: When the cleanup is done...I get to start on the flower beds and walkways... already have a bridge and a stream...need to make a pond for the fishies...I think I have enough to keep me busy for the rest of my life!

12 Feb, 2011

 

What a great day you have had Lori. those trees are just huge. i cant wait for ours to get bigger most of them are seedlings we have planted over the years.

12 Feb, 2011

 

Forestry is a science that requires patience. It takes 40 to 50 years for the hardwoods to attain a moderate size, the softwoods grow faster 20 to 30 years..and the birch and aspen grow the fastest 15 to 25 years..so it's not an "instant" landscape. What we have is a piece of forest that has some pretty old oaks...Not exactly ancient, but they must be close to a century old...Not many of the mature Tsuga are left...less than a dozen of the size in the picture, and some middle aged sugar maples..too numerous to count...and 4 or 5 really large golden birch that are not in good shape. Stradling the Matawatchan Road in two places (that I know of) there are reforested and protected forest areas. But there are logging trucks on the road all the time, as land owners take the profit from their land in timber.

12 Feb, 2011

 

Trouble is you dont want a forest replanted with fast growers do you, or certain wildlife wont stay and you need a good supply of hardwoods which take so long to grow. Even some pines take a while. Do you know if any of these land owners replant?
We have brambles and nettles in a 3ft x 30ft patch between us and the allotments. Our neighbour has nothing much in his identical patch. I would love to plant it with hawthorn but he probly wouldnt want the work to keep it in good order. I would do it on ours except we cant get at it having no access whereas he has. Hawthorn is great for wildlife here, being indigenous

13 Feb, 2011

 

From what I've read Tetra, the hawthorn is a problem for people and automobiles. Special care must be taken when pruning and disposing as the spines can puncture Wellies and (in years past) automobile tires. Beyond that they sound like an excellent choice as all native species have the advantage of being indigenous. What about planting Hazel? They would give you nuts to eat.

13 Feb, 2011

 

Its just the bullfinches love hawthorn and nest there. The patch is not a thoroughfare at all just a small space left between our bottom of garden walls and the fencing off of the paddock. We have had a couple male and one female bullfinch for about 4/5 years now. Would love to see them increase as they are red flagged here.

13 Feb, 2011

 

Sounds like a well thought out plan. Good for you. Go for it! Sad when we see species on the decline especially when it's attributable to lack of, or change in habitat.

13 Feb, 2011

 

If they keep trying to build on our countryside I can see this island sinking under the waves with the weight of concrete Lori!

13 Feb, 2011

 

When I stop to ponder the future, I have a feeling of foreboding. Just how long can this cycle repeat? Another member was mentioning the effort to save the hedgerows. I do hope people take it seriously because "this realm....this England" is disappearing under concrete, just as, over here, some of the best farmland in the world (around Toronto) is being gobbled up by developers for "bedroom" communities.

13 Feb, 2011

 

Another great blog Lori I am really enjoying reading them ,and although it is hard work for you it looks great what you are doing, no wonder you are tired......I like tree's and hate to see them being removed for no reason.I only have a medium size back garden but it supports three medium tree's and various shrubs. Also the main road at the front is tree lined......I loved the bird's but not to sure about the coyote and the wolf, take care when you are chainsawing. :0)

13 Feb, 2011

 

Yes we are lucky to have a tree lined street too Mavis (until autumn when the leaves all end up in my drive!) but its great fun to watch the birds fly from tree to tree looking for their next meal. And like you I have 3 medium trees out back but am just going to plant an acer brilliantisimum in the front garden..its been in a pot for nearly 3 years now and ready to go. More leaves to clear up next autumn!
Shame I have no room to store for leaf mould, I really hate throwing them away.

I feel like you Lori. When I see people throwing away really good wood furniture because its "old fashioned". Far better stuff than what we have now. I bought second hand dining furniture, its quality and another way to recycle.

13 Feb, 2011

 

Yes, Tetra, that wonderful word...quality! Nothing of
"quality" happens overnight, does it? What are the unique qualities of the brilliantisimum? I have a number of the acer saccharum...in a month..or a little bit...we are going to tap those trees! Maple syrup, YUM!
Living in the city was a necessity...hubby's work, children's school...but living here in the forest feels like the right place to be.
Mavis: We lived for ten years in the far north just at the "tree line"...(beyond that is muskeg and permafrost) and I yearned to walk under tall trees...well, I guess, dues are paid and here I am...at last. Wouldn't want to live without them again.

13 Feb, 2011

 

:-)....

13 Feb, 2011

 

Mmmm, yes, Lori. You're making me think - how barren our life would be without trees. It is the trees that show us the changing of the seasons, and looking at their shapes and leaves close-up is so rewarding. Our favourite in our front garden is a purple-leaf cherry, and in the back an enormous Whitebeam.

I had a lovely old friend who was ALWAYS positive, and when he was widowed, and had to live in one room in an old peoples' Home, he said "I'm lucky, I have a tree outside my window!" I've never forgotten that.

13 Feb, 2011

 

enjoyed your blog Lori as always, i wish i had all those lovely trees to look at each day and walk through, wonderfull, dont go doing to much will you, lovely pics ;o))

13 Feb, 2011

 

Sometimes the best we can do is just "decide" to be happy...and get on with the rest of our life. I put in a few years deciding to be happy...and to a degree it works. It's nice to say that today, I truly am happy.
Cherries...oh I'd love to have a big old cherry tree! My father in law had one and he used to fret about sharing his cherries with the robins! He had more than he could use or give away...but he bought a net to keep the robins away. :-o...
Thanks Sandras...xo

14 Feb, 2011

 

Oh how sad Lori, it would have been so much more amusing to watch the robins than watch the cherries!

15 Feb, 2011

 

That was my thought on the subject, too, Tetra. Great minds!

15 Feb, 2011

 

im glad you can say that Lori, im almost there lol, i need to back off from certain probs , but its hard when your a mum, but im getting there, maybe when we retire and decide on our move ;o)

16 Feb, 2011

 

Hiya, Lori. I've just found your post and I read it with interest. It looks like you have an entire forest for yourself, it must be so nice to be able to engage with nature and the birds without being disturbed. Neighbours about a quarter of a mile up the road sounds like heaven to me...ours are only 1 meter away...Forestry is definitely a fascinating subject that I don't know very much about but I'm really keen to learn. It goes hand in hand with foraging, which my husband and I are more familiar with. I'll be reading your other posts with interest and hopefully learn a thing or two.

Diana

16 Feb, 2011

 

Sandra: If you and Baz decide to retire to the country I can recommend it wholeheartedly!
Diana: Thanks for your interest in my blog. I'm beginning to feel at home here and settled. I credit my sense of peace to the woodlot, and I'm remembering forest lore that my father told me. He's been gone 25 years. He was a wise and knowledgeable man and I'm happy to finally get to use some of the lessons he taught me when I was too young to realize that I'd need them one day!

16 Feb, 2011

 

but he would be so proud and pleased with what you are doing now lori ~ what a legacy!!

16 Feb, 2011

 

I agree Sticki!

17 Feb, 2011

 

think we would retire more into the countryside, we are half way there in a rural village and surrounded by fields and farms, i love the peace, cant bare to be in a town or city for to long,

21 Feb, 2011

 

The thought of going shopping for a day out fills me with horror San, I like to do the research, find out where is cheapest and make a beeline there and back. No hanging around..well maybe that lovely little Italian restaurant in town...but thats it!

21 Feb, 2011

 

yes Tetra i go into town but know exactly where im going and also go early as shops open before it gets busy, italian sounds good though :o)

21 Feb, 2011

 

Aww.. bless you for saying that, Sticki. It would be so nice to make a little fire and boil a billycan and discuss plans. He made great bush tea. LOL...you'd be surprised how easily one adjusts to travelling all that distance, Tetra. You have an Italian restaurant...we have discovered a Chinese restaurant... Hubby is quite in synch with you both...but I like to wander and look..drives him crazy...makes me angry when he wants to rush off. But I remind him that we are retired and entitled to smell the roses!~ He's coming around to my way of thinking...slowly.

21 Feb, 2011

 

Its like getting glue out of the house where my OH is concerned..he loves it here. I certainly like to smell the roses Lori, but rather have the ones in my garden..they dont have an "exhaust" perfume! lol!

21 Feb, 2011

 

It is such a lovely garden, Tetra... don't blame you one bit!

21 Feb, 2011

Add a comment

Recent posts by Lori

Members who like this blog

  • Gardening with friends since
    10 Sep, 2010

  • Gardening with friends since
    3 Apr, 2010

  • Gardening with friends since
    27 Dec, 2009

  • Gardening with friends since
    15 Jan, 2010

  • Gardening with friends since
    17 Aug, 2010

  • Gardening with friends since
    31 Oct, 2010

  • Gardening with friends since
    4 Jul, 2008

  • Gardening with friends since
    14 May, 2010

  • Gardening with friends since
    1 Mar, 2008

  • Gardening with friends since
    22 Aug, 2010

  • Gardening with friends since
    28 Jul, 2008

  • Gardening with friends since
    4 Oct, 2008

  • Gardening with friends since
    9 Apr, 2008

  • Gardening with friends since
    10 Oct, 2008

  • Gardening with friends since
    1 Apr, 2009

  • Gardening with friends since
    30 Nov, 2010