Christmas Bells

Christmas Bells
Christmas Bells - Blandfordia nobilis

Sunday, July 22, 2007

Peter's "clean-up" - of broken trees

Kim and Peter came over to Robertson today, and we had "breakfast" at the "Three Creeks Cafe" (see their spot on the Robbo Village Website) with Bernie and Olivia, which was very pleasant.

The real purpose of their visit was for Peter to wield his chainsaws. After the wind damage earlier in the month, there were many trees, mostly the fast-growing "ferny-leaved Wattles" - Acacia mearnsii and Acacia decurrens - which had suffered extreme wind damage.
The thin tree above is merely half a tree, you can just see the raw wood, about 1.5 metres from the ground, where an entire trunk split away - tearing the tree in half.

The tree below was snapped in half - a trunk about 6 inches (12 cm in diameter), at above head height. It takes immense power in the wind to snap a tree like this. That requires much greater force than splitting or tearing branches away from a weak joint, as in the other photos.

See the photo below, the day these trees were planted - 17 May 2004.

Peter firstly cut one tree - probably the largest of them - which had been badly split at the base, and half of the tree was lying flat on the ground. (Click on those "hot links" to see the images of this tree, as described.)
Below is the clean cut base where the tree was removed entirely.

Then, with me steadying the ladder, Peter "carefully" trimmed a number of sapling wattles, some of which were nearly touching the overhead powerlines. It is worth noting that the tallest
trees had already been "pruned by the winds", but some of the stems were still too tall for safety, being under the powerlines.

These wattle trees, in the foreground (above - already cut in half by Peter, today) were planted by Zoe and me, on 17 May 2004 - a mere 3 years, two months and 5 days ago. Incredible growth, which is directly attributable to the rich red basalt soil, and of course, Robertson's rain.

See the matching photo below, taken from the back of the house - the same place as the photo above.

Below is all that remains of the tall thin wattle tree near the front gate, which was split earlier in the month. This is the same tree as in the top photograph, taken on 4 July 2007.

Below is a ready-made bonfire pile, of the trees cut today, and also some prunings done two weeks ago. It needs to dry out for a while, but a fine late afternoon bonfire beckons. I have a hose line adjacent - having learnt something from previous mistakes of burn-offs which got a little bit out of hand. This fire will be well within reach of a hose.

It is remiss of me to not mention Kim, who jumped in and weeded several rows of my Peonies growing in the long weeds, below the house. Then, not content with that, helped Peter and me drag the cut trees down the hill to the bonfire pile.
She also fed Melba (the Welsh Mountain Pony) with a carrot and some slices of bread - for which Melba is deeply appreciative.

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