Wilderness Rant

I don’t remember if I’ve ranted about this in these pages, but it’s about the “wilderness” across the street. Up until last summer, the warehouse that fills the block across the street was bordered by 25 feet x 813 feet of trees and shrubs. Much of it was cotoneaster and vine maple and blackberry, but there was also forsythia, 12 pin oaks, and lot of other “wildness”. The birds loved it over there, my neighbours and I enjoyed the free blackberries, and the forsythia always told me when to prune my roses.

This picture was taken the day I first saw the house that would soon be my own. Would have been Feb 2007.

All changed when the owners of the warehouse decided…something. First they ripped out all the shrubbery and undergrowth. No more blackberries, no more forsythia. And for some reason that defies explanation, they made the already steep bank even steeper.

I asked Backhoe Man why they were doing this, and all he knew was that they would replant. Hmm…

These little pin oaks are the only things that are left:

May 5, 2015. (The garden is 3-4 weeks later than this year.) The small bank is actually about 10′ high, and now as much as 45 degree slope in places.

Well, until early July, when I heard chain saws revving up and went out to find someone cutting them all down. Now I’ll agree with whoever might say, ‘they’re pretty spindly and sad’, but they’d survived the great drought up to that time with no added water and all the disturbance of three months prior. What’s more, they were the only green things left. I asked Chain Saw Man what the deal was, and he said the owner wanted to paint. Ah, of course, good reason to cut down 12 trees.

And so it stayed. The blackberries started to grow back, the little cedar that was plunked up on the top of the bank (at the beginning of the video) died, of course. And they painted. The painter even asked to use my outdoor electrical outlet! He wasn’t to blame for the trees, so I let him.

And a few days ago, the piece of resistance:

Hydroseeding! Those rock-ish looking things are actually the contents of old dead planters that for some reason got rolled down the hill and left.

I took a video of Grass Masters hydroseeding, but unfortunately managed to delete it. Never mind–you get the idea. They sprayed over everything: the ditch, the gravel path at the top, the ancient debris of discarded planters, the blackberry shoots, probably already dead since they apparently also sprayed weed killer three days before. Enough time to dissipate? or just enough time to kill all the seeds being sprayed?

We’ve had barely a sprinkling of rain in the 4 days since this, and today it looks like this:

Really not any worse. Couldn't get much worse.
Up the street. Really not any worse.
Down the street. Couldn't get much worse.
Down the street. Couldn’t get much worse.

Stay tuned, I’ll definitely keep you updated on this.


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