Sometimes, we rage. Our neighbors alerted us to it being brush-pickup-week in the ‘hood last week, which was the perfect opportunity for us to do a little spring summer cleaning of the property, as if we had been needing an excuse. Whether I’ve said it outright yet or you’ve just noticed it in the pictures we’ve been posting on instagram, we have an immeasurable amount of brush to deal with; of course, a lot of this removal is completely voluntary–an effort to voluntarily take control of areas of the yard that were allowed to become heavily overgrown with weeds, small trees, grasses, and riddled with dead or downed branches–because while they don’t look awful, they aren’t helping to highlight this beautiful property.
Brush abundance is the main reason you haven’t seen the barn yet. Right, there’s a barn. If we can’t see it through the brush, you aren’t going to be seeing much either, but hopefully I can get you inside one day soon.
Pete’s been ambitiously trimming, chopping, and weeding through the accessible rough areas of the yard, and even borrowed the almighty chipper from his Dad to help facilitate clear-out. But free brush-pickup-week really changes your focus, which up until this point has been trim-chip-trim-chip, turning it into TRIM-TRIM-TRIM-TRIM-toss-by-the-curb-to-let-the-city-deal-with.
Pulling downed branches, untangling vines, and wielding a machete with more skill than Zorro (assuming Zorro was a woodsman or farmer, I don’t really know anything about the guy) wasn’t enough though. After many hours of manual labor, Pete employed the boss (which we never refer to the Jeep as, but for all intents and purposes is, our Jeep Patriot) and allowed it to do some heavy lifting with small tree and stump removal. One of the bigger removals involved pulling out the almost-completely-dead rhododendron in front of our bedroom window.
Employing the car is one of those challenges in which you entrust in and test the strength of your car, and hope for the best. In this case, the root ball was small and popped up with a firm tug, more quickly and effectively than we would have achieved by digging.
The removal of the overgrown matrimonial vine (not a honeysuckle) took a lot longer than we expected; thing was huge, and every branch was covered with thick 3″ thorns. Bringing this plant down to its knees cleared a 25′ space in our backyard, exposing the split rail fence, expanding our view from the house into the woods, and giving our yard a lot of extra light. Also, it’s a nice clear space for turkeys to land, which you might have noticed if you follow me on Instagram.
What I’m getting at is, we’re winning, or we like to think we are. Progress is progress, and this summer we’re focused heavily on outdoor projects.
The stump that remained was too big for us to dig out by hand, and even too big for the Jeep to tug on (it spanned a 4′ area), so we were happy to bring in a local stump removal company for hire to take care of the remaining mess for us. For $75, he cleared the massive stump and left us with a perfectly opened yard.