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Trees Coming Down

Catalpa trees to come down 2011

Catalpa trees to come down 2011

My neighbor’s 3 Catalpa Trees are ancient and quite rotten.  They have been declared dangerous not only to sewer lines, sidewalk upheaval, but also for the possibility of falling branches.

I am sure that my neighbors will miss these lovely trees, and the shade they offer in summer.

Did you know that on one night during the fall season, all the leaves come down at once?

I do!

For the last 20 years I have raked these leaves out of my yard and the storm drains because they make a slippery, clogging mess.  The leaves are huge.

I have mixed feelings because the trees are dangerous and these trees have a specific lifespan, which they have exceeded, but because they have always been a part of my experience I wonder about them.

The picture at the top of the page is what I see from my office door.  It is the painting/view on that wall.

Wikipedia information about Catalpa Trees

The 100 year old cherry tree came down 2 weeks ago from across the street. Lots of change happening.

Necessary change brings up many feelings too.  Are people working on their trees in your neighborhood?  How does that change the landscape for you?

Related Reading:
The Life of an Apple Tree
Trees which become Catalogues
Keep Watching by Terrill Welsh
Trim the Dead Wood – It’s Gotta Go
The Tree of Life

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29 Responses to “Trees Coming Down”

  1. Robin Says:

    Hi Patricia – I’m VERY glad these tress have come down – they sounded unsafe to me.

    Cheers – Robin
    Robin recently posted..Introducing RendezvoxMy Profile

    patricia Reply:

    Yes, I think they might be unsafe too Robin…and that worries me every time big trucks come down the street. So many people walk past and under neath…

    I spoke to a fellow on another street and they city wants to pay him $1000 to take down his 3 old maple trees which are damaging the sewers and certainly the sidewalk…but he loves the colors in the fall. I could help but think new trees could have lovely fall colors too, it is worth the danger to others?

    There is a time and place

  2. Melody | Deliberate Receiving Says:

    Hi Patricia,
    I love big old trees. They have such amazing energy and such stories to tell. :) But when it’s their time, they go. Nature deals with change so much more eloquently than we do. Old trees die and rot and return to the ground as fertilizer. The tree itself is such a powerful metaphor for change (which is why you probably chose it, eh?) Every year it “loses” it’s leaves and then in the spring, it’s born again.
    Ooh, this post has put me in such a good mood now. I just want to run out and hug a tree. 😉

    Melody | Deliberate Receiving recently posted..Can I Use The Law Of Attraction To Win The LotteryMy Profile

    patricia Reply:

    Our neighborhood seems to be self pruning this year…just after I finished writing this post another neighbors Mountain Ash tree came down and nearly took out another’s garage.

    I hope this is a metaphor that I am also learning to let go – release my weight…I have been using it as a meditation focus.

    The chipped wood for the cherry tree was a gift to our front garden – we mulched in the pathways around the garden boxes until the Japanese strawberry plants take over…
    Lots of change
    I have a barefoot to tree mediation too…lots of ways to hug a tree :)
    Thank you for your joyous words

    Robin Easton Reply:

    Dear Patricia,

    Loved this post, also Melodies line: “Nature deals with change so much more eloquently than we do.” That is SO wise and true.

    I loved this post because, as you KNOW, I love trees. So I had many mixed emotions. We have some neighbors that have this exact same tree in their yard (the Catalpa Tree). I never knew what it was until you posted it here, but is has beautiful blossoms each year and then later those long seed pods. I have some dried pods hanging on my wall. :) And I photograph the flowers each year.

    I also know it is hard when a tree may be unsafe for humans. Here in New Mexico, it seems that it is the roots that the most troublesome.

    Since we get so little rain fall, some years almost none (like this year), tree roots seek out mains water and sewer lines to get their water.

    Roots are SO amazing and strong. They can crack pipes and eventually cause the clogging or collapse of the pipe lines. We have to have someone come out every so often and cut all the tree roots that get into our pipes. Some people have to cut the trees down due to drains clogging so badly. It’s sad to see the only source of shade and green (here in the southwest) be cut down, but I also understand. But people eventually learn to plants trees further away from pipes.

    Hugs to you dear Patricia. Love how you always make me think. Hope you are doing well. LOVE the new site (your other one), WOW and WOW!!!! :) You are amazing!!
    Robin Easton recently posted..Life- FirsthandMy Profile

    patricia Reply:

    Dear Sweet Robin Easton! of tree loving fame!
    Book group has just left and it was a marvelous discussion tonight, with one person saying she was jealous that she just did the right thing and got married and raised two sons and did what she was supposed to and did not go off into the woods to find herself!!! I think her adventures of autonomy are coming up in her retirement.

    Naked in Eden is such a great book – and yep 2nd question of the evening was about your partner :)

    We have even more trees coming down all around the neighborhood – I think it is from 2 years of too much rain and not enough heat to balance things out.

    I am hopeful that this summer will balance things out…We have such a huge snow pack and so much rain that the rivers are flooding and the wind farms are turning off the windmills. Wonder if the Salmon will return?

    So much change – not always so eloguent

    Robin Easton Reply:

    What an amaaaazing and loving response, Patricia. Just love you!!!

    Also how incredible that my story is opening potential doors for this woman. Although they may be painful awakenings, ones she may wish had happened earlier in life, that does not matter. She is awakening and has a second chance.

    I’m 57 and people my age and older are doing the MOST astounding things in life. They are claiming their “second” chance, or second life.

    Her possible thoughts of jealousy, possible anger, regret, and etc, can be the EXACT springboard or energy she needs to act NOW. To seize what her body and spirit are telling her.

    Even people who are paralyze, dying of cancer, and so are creating GREAT dreams, lives, and changing both their own lives and the world.

    Often our anger, resentment, etc is powerful energy that can be channeled to make us act. More often than not, it is there for that very purpose.

    Just love that you shared all this with me. So so moving.

    I also cannot believe the RAIN you are getting. We are in severe drought here in NM, and have been suffering extreme smoke and ash fallout from the that HUGE AZ fire just across the border of NM. Quite a bit clearer today. Thank the heavens for that. A blessing.

    Thank you sweet friend.
    All love,
    Robin Easton recently posted..Life- FirsthandMy Profile

  3. vered | blogger for hire Says:

    A couple of years ago we had to take down a tree that I loved because it just dies on us. It was heartbreaking, but necessary.
    vered | blogger for hire recently posted..Tried to Get Grandma to Give Me Exact Recipe Measurements FailedMy Profile

    patricia Reply:

    I think trees are hard to part with because they have been a part of us for so long. I think letting go was very hard for the family next door and now they have waited nearly too long.

    Heartbreaking and necessary – so much truth

  4. Talon Says:

    It’s sad to see them go, for sure. A reminder of life cycles, but a sad one. So often, we don’t realize how much we value them until they are gone. And what a void they leave not only on the landscape, but in our lives.

    patricia Reply:

    It is sad to see them go, but then again when they might be too dangerous to trust????

    The nice thing about trees is that one can plant more! and when you prune them they most often thank you.

    I understand there will be only about 2 catalpa trees left in town.

    It is sad to me too Talon, that people so freely cut down our Evergreen trees – they used to be as common as dirt and held the dirt in place…now people have encroached on their land too and so now we have flooding and landslides. Fir trees drink 500 gallons of water a day!

  5. susan Says:

    Hi Patricia! Two summers ago we had two huge locust trees cut down in our yard. They had those itsy bitsy leaves that defied raking! While the look of the trees foliage was, at times, rather heavenly, I don’t miss them at all. We have so much more sunshine in our yard it allowed for me to have a much bigger garden (veggies). I really like the change. Change is good. I don’t think the planter of those trees had any clue they’d get so big and in doing so, shaded the entire back yard. We still have plenty of trees and bushes – always something to rake in the fall.

    patricia Reply:

    Change is Good – yes it is susan – yes it is

  6. Jannie Funster Says:

    Nope, I did not know they dropped their leaves in one night! So amazing, is nature.

    The loss of shade is the hardest I think.

    But yay for you not having all that sweeping and unclogging to do! That’s a good thing.

    Sweet office window view! Nice garden indeed.


    patricia Reply:

    Yes, I have already been in conference with this neighbor about the loss of shade – not as important as in Texas but when the rain stops it is ever thus….We want trees that drink a lot of water but do not damage the drains and gutters, sidewalks, and possibly injure people…

    Trees take a lot of care, I think I will not miss cleaning up after these trees but I will miss the beautiful blooms

    Every window in our house has a captured a painting of our outside world and let air and light flow

  7. patricia Says:

    so much rain, so much snow in the mountains…it has been an incredible 2 years – there is so much too much that the folks can turn off the windmills on the wind farms.
    The times they are a changing.

    I may have to come and visit you to warm up! :)

  8. Tess The Bold Life Says:

    No trees comin’ down in the desert! The book came today, I like it. I’m on chapter 3!
    Tess The Bold Life recently posted..You’re Invited- To Change the WorldMy Profile

    patricia Reply:

    3 trees down today in the wet…3 more tomorrow
    I am so happy you received the book…chapter 3 I was sure you would like it…

  9. Todd | Channelingmyself Says:

    I love trees, especially the old ones. Living here in Colorado I really enjoy the fragrance the evergreens bring when I’m up hiking in the mountains.

    patricia Reply:

    Oh I love the smell of Evergreen trees – this morning they were on the wind on my walk – YES!
    I insist we share the holidays with a GRAND FIR to bring the smell indoors.

    These tree men are going such a good job and put some kind of elastic banding on the 100 year old cedar tree which is still strong and healthy – I think they will pick lovely and healthy replacement trees for my neighbor

  10. Deborah Says:

    How apt your post is for me today Patricia. Change is in the air here too but it isn’t the trees. Dave (my husband) had a minor heart attack last week (read between the lines for all those feelings that I am glossing over at this point). he is now at home and taking it easy having had three stents inserted into two minor arteries. 16 years ago, aged 38, he had a stent placed in a major artery which is still good apparently. So, having not been completely good to himself over the past 16 years ago, change is in the air and he has vowed to both eat and live healthily. The British Heart Foundation has an app for recipes which is brilliant by the way! This change in lifestyle affects us all of course.
    We do have an ancient pear tree in our garden which shades the patio and drops an abundance of pears each year, that the dogs love to eat (despite what this does to their digestive systems) We did once wonder about cutting it down but though a bit gnarled and in need of some care, we think we’ll keep it. Maybe we’ll put up a net to catch the pears this year! :-)

    patricia Reply:

    I am reading huge dynamics between the lines. What an emotional experience – you do have lots of support systems though for making the changes and that is powerful. I wish you both well.

    We are keeping our 100 year old apple tree too, it is a piece of art and love in our lives, but we are pruning it hard to keep the heaviest branches safe from so much rain and wet – and propping to keep the branches from falling. I am hand picking off most of the apples to keep the branches light. We are grafting these flavorful gems on to the other trees.

    I think if you pick the pears while they are just starting to ripen, you may have some eating gems…

    So much change going on – I will keep you in my prayers and send along healing thoughts.

    I think you will enjoy the healthy eating – now I can not believe I used to eat some of those items!

  11. Arts Web Show Says:

    It’s a shame they have to be cut down but i suppose necessary

    patricia Reply:

    I think these are so dangerous that they must come down, but it does bring up sorrow.

    Finding the joyous side takes a bit of work – people are so hard on nature

    Loved your last poem – WOW

  12. Falling Trees | The Biking Architect Says:

    […] Our neighborhood is busy with tree pruning and removal this year – partly because of so much rain and the problems this is causing for the trees. […]

  13. Hilary Says:

    Hi Patricia .. we have Dutch Elm disease again here in the south of England .. them little beetles be on the rampage & whole swathes of elms have to be cut down .. the wood burnt etc … it’s been too dry and warm during the first 6 months of this year …

    I hate losing trees .. but fungus can kill, age can wobble, and wind can take its toll – and we’ve had lots of that this year ..

    Times are a-changing .. we’ll get new trees .. and so will you I hope .. good luck with it all .. cheers Hilary
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    patricia Reply:

    Hi Hilary,
    Yep we will all adjust – I am glad these were my neighbors trees and they paid to have them taken down so carefully and are already looking to new choices for the fall planting.

    On my walk today a man told me the city was fining him $1,000 a tree for the damage they were doing to the street and the sewer, if he was determined to keep them. They offered free new street trees and it would have cost him $700 to take down the 3 huge maples…he is holding firm…

    Already several big branches have fallen during the winter missing parked cars by inches..

    I think trees do have a lifespan and it is shorter with the invasion of people and pollution.

  14. Val Says:

    Are they rotten all the way through? Because if not then they could just be pollarded.

    I hate to see trees come down, but in nature everything eventually dies and so if they are very ill, they should come down.
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    Patricia Reply:

    I am afraid Val that they are dangerously rotten and not setting full leaves.

    Today they are all gone – new trees will be coming in the fall

    I have learned a new term – thank you
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