An early start sent Jim off on the BBH to a ride, a funeral for a Hog member, and a class in preparation for the big 5 state rally that his chapter is hosting.
A bit of laundry washed and hung out, a trip into town with daughter’s family to get cat food and lunch together and then we returned home to plant trees. They gave us an Arbor Day membership for Christmas and that comes with 10 trees. They came a couple of weeks ago and were all deciduous trees that had to be nurseried for a couple of years before planting in their permanent places. They are the ones that I built an extra garden box for them to live in for the two years. That I managed on my own, then this week, the ones they ordered for us came. A dozen various fir trees, Norway Spruce, Canadian Hemlock, and Eastern Red Cedars, a 4 foot red maple, and two Forsythia slips. The firs needed to be planted where they will grow as they don’t transplant well. There is a windbreak row of pines that eldest son and I planted about 9 or 10 years ago that were Earth Day twigs and are now 8 to 15 foot trees, but there are some holes in the windbreak and some holes up where we have planted live rooted Christmas trees and lost one. There are some areas of the property that we consider yard and don’t save for hay that we have worked to reforest. A contribution to reducing our carbon footprint.
The 5 of us (grands wanted to help dig), set out with the tractor, a couple shovels, a garden fork, a maddock, the bucket of tiny trees in water, and another bucket with water. The maple was planted in the row of deciduous trees and then we extended the windbreak, filled in holes where trees didn’t take, moved up to the Christmas tree area and spaced out 4 others. A total of 15 holes were dug, 15 areas cleared of sod, 15 trees and shrubs planted and watered in. Each young tree is marked with a 4 foot pole and bright green marker flag so they don’t get mowed down when the grass grows up around them. That took us a good bit of time.
Near one of the trees was an area that was impossible to mow, a low, partially covered rock pile. For the past several early springs, I have loaded bucket loads of rock from that pile thinking that I was getting it low enough to mow. We decided to finish moving the pile and man oh man it was a job bigger than we anticipated. The pile was more extensive and deeper than appeared possible. We moved 15 or 20 tractor buckets full of rock, used the tractor bucket to dig up at least a dozen rocks that were so large that they could only be rolled into the bucket to remove them. Though the area is now torn up, it is rock free and smoothed as well as the tractor and our hands could manage. I think it is going to be an area that can be mowed with the brush hog this summer.
The only remaining big job is the chick pen fence and we still have about 4 weeks to do it. Tomorrow is going to be rainy and windy and this senior body is likely to be too sore to do much physical anyway.
I am grateful to daughter and her family for all of their hard work and help today and for getting us the trees to help with our project. Hopefully the little trees will thrive and grow quickly.
Yesterday, I spent the afternoon at the Smithfield House at volunteer training. Hopefully within a few weeks, I will be doing interpretative tours at the house as well as spinning on the dates that have been scheduled for it. I think I learned more history yesterday than I ever learned in school.