photo courtesy of: maggie and her camera

The third week of my grand undertaking started out with the decision to broaden my Two a Day parameters from working only in the back yard to include whatever yard work needs doing in the front and side yards as well. The space along the side of the house is in desperate need of love and attention so that is where the week began, the side yard:

More evil weed removal. This time it was the Tree of Heaven, or as Adelita said in the comments from last week's post, Go to Hell Tree. (As an aside, I will be calling it that from now on.)

side yard before

side yard after

My husband came in from doing something with wires or cables on that side of the house last week and informed me that the tree is taller than him now. My husband is 6' 5" so that is a tall frigging weed!

Go to Hell Tree before

Go to Hell Tree after

Next up for this area is a little grading, weed barrier cloth and gravel. I will be trolling craigslist's free section for dirt and gravel and see what I can find.

Nothing worthy of before and after photos. I went back to working in the back yard and dug up some grasses, did some grading, bagged some miscellaneous organic junk,and pulled some little straggler silverleaf nightshade.

Wednesday's yard work almost didn't happen for two reasons. First, the front of my torso is all bruised from crawling around in our minuscule attic space looking for the other end of a Romex wire for our electrician. Look, here I am:

Second, I made an unwise choice the night before and made a quiche for dinner with cream cheese that I wasn't 100% sure about. I woke up before 5am with an upset stomach and spent the rest of the day in a gloomy haze.

I think it was my embarrassment at the cream cheese decision that made me go out even though I wasn't feeling tip-top. I worked for an hour and dug out a spot of grass in the side yard which sounds like a lightweight day but check out the photos!

the downspout area before

the downspout area after

my trophy

More electrical-related activities. I didn't crawl around in any tight spaces but by the time the electrician left it was too hot to work in the yard so nothing for Thursday.

All the rain from the last two days made taking out the last grassy areas far smoother (just, you know, muddier.) I also took a whack at a tree trunk that has skulked in the corner of the side yard for as long as we've had the place.

tree trunk before:

tree trunk after:

I am going to wait until things dry off a bit before I bag up much of the grass I dug up.

Does anyone know if the only green waste pickup window is in May? Are there other pick up times planned that the City is just being coy about? I have so many bags of weeds in my yard now that I'll have to make a dump run once they dry off. Really I'll have to make several dump runs once they dry off, my little Subaru has a big heart but a small-ish cargo area.

Views: 52

Comment by Spring Griffin on June 26, 2009 at 3:21pm
I will come get your gravel, Sophie, thank you!

The tree was pretty rotted out so I got my shovel under three different roots and popped them up. Then braced my back against the wall and pushed and the thing came free.

I don't think that the juniper trunks will come out so easily...
Comment by Masshole in Fringecrest on June 26, 2009 at 3:29pm
I am intrigued by your supposed :-) level of success eradicating your Ailanthus saplings. I have dug very deep to destroy roots, only to be foiled by reemergence over and over again. My experience is that unless you get them with copious and repeated glyphosate applications, one is doomed. Hats off to you.
Comment by Spring Griffin on June 26, 2009 at 3:32pm
Keep your hat on Masshole ;-) This is an area that I have dug Ailanthus out of before, it's just the side of the house that faces the neighbors driveway so I forget to keep digging them out. Glysophate, you say? I will google it, thank you!
Comment by Chroma Studios on June 26, 2009 at 3:49pm
In the back part of our yard, Aaron just lets the "go to hell" tree grow into a tree and then cuts it down so we can use it for firewood. They always seem to come back, in fact they spread! Looking good Spring, you've been busy, busy!
Comment by Masshole in Fringecrest on June 26, 2009 at 4:19pm
Glyphosate=Roundup, only without all the disapproving comments of DCF interlopers. :-) Don't spray when windy.
Comment by Masshole in Fringecrest on June 26, 2009 at 4:20pm
Oh yeah, and I should mention that it looks amazing and I really enjoy the posts.
Comment by Spring Griffin on June 26, 2009 at 4:24pm
Paula(Chroma), I have friends who leave the Go to Hell tree to it's own devices, too. Mine grow right above some sewer lines so they can, indeed, go to hell.

Masshole, deftly phrased and thanks for the advice and encouragement!
Comment by hettie on June 26, 2009 at 5:41pm
if you can find a "base" for the ailanthus runners, like an old stump, you can pour ahem glyphosate directly on that area. we found the main stump of a tree that had been taken out before we lived here and dousing that sucker finally did it for our back yard, although we get runners from our neighbor's yard and I'm not sure how then would feel about me hopping their fence with a bottle of poison under my arm. looking good! (I admit these posts make me feel guilty about the neglected list of yard/housework that I'm nursing. good on you!)
Comment by Snak on June 26, 2009 at 6:09pm
After about three years of persistently pulling out our various "go to hell" trees in the same spots over and over, I've noticed they are not coming back this year. Victory! As for green waste pickup, I believe it's May and December. So, a rather long wait until the next one.
Comment by Bentley on June 26, 2009 at 6:13pm
Eradicating tree of heaven can be nearly impossible. I've found that glyphosate is just as bad as trying to dig them up -- usually you simply end up with *increased* density, unless they're wee saplings growing from seed and not vegetative sprouts from established roots. Unfortunately my property is deeply infested from neighboring trees. After 7 years the only success I've had is with Triclopyr -- Fertilome Brush Killer Stump Killer, which can be difficult to acquire unless you're licensed. My recommendation is to get some of this stuff, don't use roundup as it doesn't kill deeply enough, and to apply it dilutely, killing as slowly as possible for deep penetration. Good luck! Anyone know if there are any city policies regarding this plant? Unless eradication is systematic, they'll take over in the end.


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