Wednesday, September 15, 2010

Cleanup that tree!

The last of the tree trunk disappeared last week. But, there was still a lot of sawdust and brush all over the front yard. Over the weekend, I spent a little time hauling the brush to the backyard and adding it to the brushpile—now a very big brushpile—but didn't get a chance to rake up the smaller stuff. So, Monday evening I got out the shovel, rake, wheelbarrow, lawn roller, leaf vac, and lawn tractor for some serious cleanup.

I raked up the smaller limbs and some of the sawdust; it was about 3-4 wheelbarrows full. Then I took the shovel to the large divots in the yard from the falling limbs and trunk. It still looked like a mortar practice field, so I hooked the lawn roller to the back of the tractor and ran over it a few times. It looks a bit better, but the roller was only about 1/2 full of water, so I will need to fill it and do it again.

Last of all, I hooked up the leaf vac to the back of the tractor and began making passes over the whole area. Saw dust and dust everywhere! I wondered if any of it was going into the vac, but it was. There was just so much sawdust that it seemed to be ineffective. I think I finally ended up going over some areas 7-8 times, but here's what it looked like in the end:

It filled up the vac all the way with a nice compost mix of grass, sawdust, and dirt. I won't be able to use it on beds where things are growing right now; the sawdust actually steals nitrogen while it is breaking down. Once it breaks down, it returns all the nitrogen (and then some) to the soil, but not before. But, that's not a problem because I am digging 2 new strawberry beds, a new raspberry bed; it will work wonderfully there, breaking down over the winter and being nice and loamy by spring. Here's a picture of the sawdust pile. For perspective, the pile is about 3 feet tall and about 5 feet long and 3 feet wide. That's a lot of sawdust!

Ah, but what to do with the stump? Good question; Debbie had the answer. What do you think?

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