Yard Haircut

May 23, 2014

This is one of those things in the category of you don’t really know how much you need to change something until you do and then you realize it’s such an incredible improvement you wonder why you didn’t do it before. 

I knew we were suffering from a heavy case of overgrowth in our front yard.  But we’d worked so hard and steadily on yard maintenance and new plantings that that’s pretty much all I really noticed in the front.

But one day, I was standing across the street and looking at the yard and realized the tangelo tree is just too big. So is the Meyer lemon, the redbud and the sycamore. And the fortnight lily.  And maybe even the matilija poppy. Just way too overgrown.


Right?  Ridiculous.

So we decided to remove the tangelo altogether. Too big, too crowded out, and we don’t really eat the fruit.

Here’s Frances sawing away:




We got most of it out, saving the stump removal for bigger guys who can dig and grind.

We also took the Meyer lemon way down and will relocate it this fall when it’s not so vulnerable to the shock of replanting it.  I think we’ll stick it somewhere in the back.

We clipped a few of the southerly branches of the redbud, as well.  This is where we are at the moment:


Hard to fully appreciate because the three stacks obscure the view.

To finish this job, we’ll 1) fully remove tangelo; 2) replace it with a smaller tree, like a plum or pluot (something with a fantastic spring bloom and a bright fall color); 3) trim the lower branches of the sycamore to open things up and visually create more space; 4) eighty six the fortnight; 5) plant some interesting  plants in the newly created spaces; 6) re-define the rock terrace; 7) remove some of the clutter around the base of the sycamore; and 8) build a short split rail behind the rock path to establish a bit of variation and visual texture.

Turns out, the sycamore really fills up the space, and not in a good way.  I like sycamores a lot, but they’re not really great-shaped trees. And our space is smaller than it once was, what with the twelve feet worth of house addition.

Anyway…  that was a laundry list.  Boring, sorry. But helpful for me as a before/after thing.

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