Mostly Dead Tree Mostly Gone

2014-11-22 16.31.25 2014-11-22 16.30.04

Trees are nature’s wondrous edifices. They provide food, shelter, and shade…a place for a swing or tree house, or just a place to climb for fun or from danger. Trees make oxygen and absorb carbon dioxide and in forests and jungles–rain forests, are the engines of the planet’s climate–driving the planet’s rains.

They support the ground that would otherwise turn to mud and mayhem. The cutting down of a tree in your yard is not to be taken lightly. For whatever reason you should do so with solemn regret and respect….Does it feel pain? Will it hurt? One never knows.

On the 20th of November, our Golden Rain Tree was pitilessly trimmed and her status peremptorily changed to “mostly gone”.  She is diseased and is mostly dead, but not one of us wanted to end her life–what little there is of it. Well, except for the Boy. The 20-year-old, 6 ft 4 in. callous youth took my 7 in. pruning blade and cut off all but two branches of Mostly Dead, which was, in itself, a feat of monumental proportions.  The two remaining leaf-covered branches would land rather heavily onto the roof of the house, so they will remain on Mostly Dead for the time-being.

The little shade she provided after her first similar pruning, is gone now and sorely missed. Perhaps she lives in the many other rain trees in the vicinity. The felling of the trunk will require a chain saw which I am considering gifting to our naturally destructive youth, which could be a problem–a potential danger for all other trees in Florida. I hesitate to give him such power, yet he could not cut through the trunk with my pruning saw. It is a conundrum….and it will be a sad day when Mostly Dead is All Gone.

It has been a year since I began writing about Mostly Dead Tree.  It was in the first post about her that I asked about the phrase “mostly dead”. Where was it first used and by whom? I asked for the name of the movie and either the name of the character in the film or the actor who played the part.  No one answered. So, I will divulge it now.  Drum roll, please….

The name of the movie was “The Princess Bride”, 1987.  The actor in question was Billy Crystal and the character he played was “Miracle Max”.  If you have never seen the film, which is a cult film, I suggest you give it a try. It is not a chick flick nor much of a children’s film. If you don’t think the film is funny, then let me know and I’ll castigate you in a post. Trust me, it’ll be fun.


12 thoughts on “Mostly Dead Tree Mostly Gone

  1. I have trees that I want to have removed eventually as well. They are too big to try to chop them ourselves. But I think of them as living things that I love. Also they do provide homes and rests for birds. But eventually some will have to go. Do you have any palm trees? I swear they can grow like weeds.

    • Oh, yes, we have palm trees. And they’re constantly seeding/fruiting making quite a mess. The squirrels eat the fruit of one in particular when it’s almost rotten. I have mother-in-law-tongue under one and what a mess. Plus, the gentleman who mows our lawns is out to get the plants and now I’m just going to pull them up. I do love palm trees and I have so many banana plants. Good luck with your trees. Lucy

      • Thanks.Yes that’s another thing. The squirrels eat the tiny dates so I feel like if you get rid of trees you get rid of food for the animals besides homes for the birds. My property grows trees like weeds almost. It is like trees will pop up all by themselves and not just palm trees. I think they are called volunteers. Yeah, well try to grow anything else, it dies. Unless it is a cactus, rose bush or rosemary.

      • I had asked the boy to cut down the saplings quite some time ago. It was a major production because he waited so long. Then he attacked Mostly Dead Tree leaving me and my plants without any shade on the patio. He’s lethal with that pruning blade. We have a tree against the fence that is too big to “prune”. It needs to come down, but professionally. Another is up against the house. And our neighbor’s live oak tree is almost a skyscraper and a massive limb is almost all the way into our yard. RM let everything overgrow as well. There’s a hibiscus that is now a tree. The warm weather is back so I’m going to do some pruning–at least what I can reach with the lopers. Lucy

      • It is a lot of work to stay on top of it I am sure. I am not a gardener. I never realized that trees can be such a problem. We have a tree that is too close to our house as well and I think we will have to have it removed. It drops a lot of leaves on our roof. I would need someone else to do it to do any of this removal of trees.

  2. There is something sad about losing an old tree, even one that is Mostly Dead. Maybe it’s because they are so long-lived, they establish themselves like members of one’s family. And the shade—I don’t think people realize how much shade a mature tree provides, and how valuable that is in a place where the summers are hot and sunny. One of our neighbors cut down a huge old maple in their front yard last month. It was far too big for their tiny patch of lawn, and its roots were beginning to crack the foundation of their house, so it was understandable why they wanted to get rid of it. But the hole it left, not just in their front yard but in the long boulevard of shade I enjoyed while driving down the street after a long day of work, was almost shocking.

    • I understand what you’re saying. The sad thing is that this tree is less than 10 years old. It was struck by disease early in its life and then insects. It will be missed. Thanks for coming by . Lucy

    • I’ve got everyone grieving for Mostly Dead. Now the Boy is feeling guilty for cutting off all those branches. When I first moved here they thought I was crazy being concerned for plants and trees. Just the other day the wind blew over a plant and the Boy chastised me for letting it happen. I’ve even gotten him watching “nature” in the backyard. Even RM, who couldn’t stand lizards, now knows how to tell the male from the female. Now you’re not the only one grieving for Mostly Dead. Since I introduced the tree a year ago, many readers ask about her. We’re just softies.

      Love the Princess Bride and Inigo Montoya: my name is Inigo Montoya. You killed my father. Prepare to die.

      “Inconceivable.” You know, you use that word a lot. I don’t think it means what you think it means.

      I could go on, but I won’t. Lucy

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