And, sadly, sometimes we know which ones are in trouble. There was a lovely big maple at Springside cottage, but over the past few years, it has been showing signs of die-back.
The woodpeckers have been digging into it, a sure sign that there are insects at work within the bark. The top branches have died. So, no longer healthy, it becomes a hazard, since it would be vulnerable to heavy winds. Given that it was huge, heavy, and leaning over the cottage, for safety's sake, it had to be removed.
Now, this next chapter falls under the 'Don't try this at Home' section. Brian has a lot of experience felling trees -- our 600 acres of managed forests provide all our firewood at the resort, and he's been at this for some time. So out came the chainsaw, and the bulldozer, and off the boys headed to make like hewers of trees.
There was only one small miscalculation -- and that had to do with the amount of rot at the heart of the tree. While it had all been oh so carefully designed to fall where Brian planned, the inner rot caused the tree to rotate slightly just as it began to fall, and it came a little close for comfort to the cottage. How close is comfortable? Well, Brian bent the roof. As he pointed out to Carol, only a little bit, hardly anything, really... And just a corner... Really... it barely brushed the cottage...
Carol's comment remains probably unprintable.
In truth, it is an easy 'fix', for which we can all be grateful. Personally, my vote was to leave it, as a conversation peace. I felt it added character. Carols' comment on that is best omitted as well. With Brian on chainsaw, and David on bulldozer duty, the tree has been cleaned up, and sorted. The tops will provide food for the deer. The wood will provide fires for cold winter nights. The young trees growing in its shadow will now be able to reach straight and tall up for the sun.
And the cottage? Well, yes, it will have a little roof repair done. Nobody will ever know...