Making it Eminently Clear — Cut

Lately around here I wake to the sounds of chainsaws, woodchippers, and shouts from workmen. Time to prune the trees? No way.

From what I can gather, the newer neighbors are refusing to accept the fact that if you are going to buy a house in an established neighborhood, you have to put up with some discomfort. That is, seasonal discomfort. And I don’t mean snow and ice, wind and mud.

Tree leaf fall is a yearly event. In fact, this year was also a major pine-needle drop year. For some reason, it seemed that there were more pine needles under our wonderful evergreens than usual. One group, that has new owners, albeit for several years while the group grew to more mature height, were out at the curb periodically, diligently raking and blowing the dropped needles and then hauling them into big piles, while the trees and I could only watch. The idea is that bare ground is better than a cover of protective organic material, which would otherwise protect the tree and the ground from weeds and frost. That behavior showed a profound lack of understanding of the value of giving back to nature as she gives to us.

As if that insult weren’t enough (the smell of fallen pine needles reminds me of childhood forests) – three mature, healthy sugar maples met their demise in the guise of “tree service” which is an oxymoron. Tree services should not be in the business of clear-cutting entire stands of mature trees that have served for over 50 years. The three trees guarded the entry into the neighborhood and were a source of shade for daytime walks in the summertime.

But the children needed to drop their sport balls on the lawn, and now they can, amid leftover wood shavings and the memory of living things that are now no longer there.

Hopefully, the people responsible for the life-giving trees will replace and replant specimens that are native to us and will nurture whatever wildlife is around at the season of need. But I tend to doubt it, having gotten no evidence of the awareness of most of us of the needs of others, people included. So clear-cut they will, spray, eliminate any evidence of a once truly green part of the county, leaving people like myself to maintain the habitat that we can and enjoy our lovely county parks when longer walks beckon.



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