Tuesday, September 10, 2013


This morning was dank and dreary, spitting a very light rain, in the low 60s. As I sat on our new porch drinking my coffee around 8 a.m., I got thinking "gee, the new katsura got buffeted around a little in the breezy conditions yesterday. I think it needs staking."

Just as that thought crossed my mind, three men from Bartlett appeared at the side of the porch, with guy wires and stakes, and proceeded to stake the tree!


They did it with very thin wire, and stakes that are underground, no menace to lawnmowers or clumsy feet. There are three wires, although you only see two from any angle. The wires are very loose, and cushioned around the trunk with black rubber collars.

Later in the morning I started putting the green mesh plastic trunk protectors around all the young trees that are vulnerable to antler rub in fall. I always hate doing this, it makes me feel under siege or something.

I got most of the yard trees done, and several in the meadow, but still need to do a few more. I wrapped the linden in the cul de sac -- the linden is a magnet for male deer and they have rubbed raw patches every year, so far without killing it.

I hate seeing the wrap around my nicest trees in fall. Here is the blackhaw viburnum that I limbed up so prettily. The mesh wrap is not terribly obvious, but it is there, and I really would like a clean look when the tree colors in fall. But I need to exercise all caution.  Bleeah.

One thing that concerns me is the weeping black wetness at the base of my beautiful Bloodgood Japanese maple. It is likely a bacterial infection from some damage to the bark, but what caused the injury? And what to do about it? And will it kill the tree, which so far is leafy and gorgeous and looks fine?

I  mean, really, it looks healthy and glorious -- could this injury to the trunk be fatal? OMG.

I e-mailed Bartlett with a picture, asking if I should be concerned. More on this to come.

The problem with the Japanese maple just added to a heavy, lingering sense of anxiety. Foreboding, sadness, I dunno.  The tree, the gloomy weather. . . .

. . . the fact that we invited friends for dinner, set last Friday for the date, got an affirmative but underwhelming response. Then we had to cancel because another friend's mother died and calling hours were last Friday evening.  I e-mailed to change the dinner date, but got no response. Called and left a message, gave alternate dates and finally got an e-mail back that they understood and would let us know what alternate dates worked.

Nothing for six days now. Did they forget they were invited? Do they not want to come -- there were very terse and uncharacteristic responses from them, when I got any at all.  Urp.

. . .  and the fact that I sent Greg money for his new truck, then got a text message that he had buyer's remorse and decided not to go ahead, and made some fixes on the old one instead. Okay. I e-mailed with a question about his uncle's funeral and about his decision on the truck, but no response after five days. Another urp.

I feel adrift.

Weird stuff -- the inn where we are staying next week on our road trip to Virginia and North Carolina sent an e-mail thanking us for visiting recently and hoped we had a good time. We don't arrive until next Monday.

Tamarack Lodge at Mammoth, where we are booked for Christmas, showed our arrival date on my Master Card bill as August 13.

Weird stuff, unsettling.

Changeable end of season weather.

I feel strange and unmoored.

(plus the ultimate kicker -- after growing my hair out since January -- over 8 months now -- I went in for a haircut today and instead of trimming it as requested, she simply cut it all back to a short boy's cut like before. Kind of a bowl cut this time. Cute on an 8 year old. I have to start over, another 6 - 8 months to go to grow it out again. . . how's that for feeling unsettled and sorry for myself!)