Saying Goodbye to a Tree

This week, we said goodbye to a large Blue Spruce tree at the south corner of our lot. It was actually two trees, right next to each other, which appeared as one. The tree was large and beautiful, so it was a difficult decision to call someone to remove it. However, knowing that it would continue to grow larger and larger, we felt that it was the right thing to do.

We had a large truck on our lawn for an hour to remove the Blue Spruce tree.

We had a large truck on our lawn for an hour to remove the Blue Spruce tree.

The problem was that the tree was planted in a rather poor location.

It was located:
* South of our kitchen dining area. Eating lunch in the wintertime behind the shade of a tree contributes to seasonal affective disorder in a big way.
* Just south of an apple tree. With the tree showing signs of wood rot, we hoped that improved air circulation and sunlight would help the tree bounce back.
* South-west of our large vegetable garden and south of our extra “Sector” garden. With less than five hours of full sun, another two hours of sunlight would make our garden plants much happier and more productive.
* On the lot line where the neighbor’s house sat just a couple yards away. This meant that we had to trim branches off the neighbor’s house.

Basically, we needed more SUN and less crowding. Being on a corner lot where two sides of our lot are planted with eight shady city trees, where we also have a Maple and Oak tree on the other side of our house, and a large Honey Locust tree in the backyard, there weren’t many options that could give us the kind of sunlight and openness that would improve our lives.

Perhaps some people will question our decision. It wasn’t an easy one to make.

Our concerns with removing the tree were as follows:
* We believe that trees are very beneficial and wonderful to have in the city. The tree was old and had a nice appearance.
* Animal nests and habitats by the tree would be disturbed. With that corner of the lot being shady and filled with brush piles, there would be one less place for squirrels to climb, birds to perch, and bunnies to hide.
* Removing the tree would mean a loss of a large windbreak in our backyard.
* We were concerned about whether our neighbors would miss the tree. It had been a part of our neighbors’ skyline for years, so we weren’t the only ones looking at it.
* We wanted to avoid soil compaction in our backyard from the tree service’s truck. We care deeply for our soil and worry about the impact of heavy machinery on the ground.
* The cost was high, so we had to be certain we would enjoy the benefits.

Before picture

Before picture

After picture

After picture

Now that the tree is really gone, how do I feel? Well, a part of me is sad to say goodbye, but mostly, I feel relieved. The year-round benefits will be much appreciated and the additional sunshine is already bringing us more joy and hope.

As other people plant trees, may this tree teach us to consider good tree placement, particularly for those who might live in our houses long after we are gone.

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