Re: [gardeners] rain rain rain

penny x stamm (
Wed, 28 Feb 2001 01:03:20 -0500

 Hello, Ron --

I'm worrying about the other side of gardening -- whether that
prize umbrella tree of mine, right by the front door, will ever 
get its magnificent shape back in the summertime...  I don't say
spring, because that's a season we never get. Jim and I very
carefully wrapped that tree slightly snugly with bird netting, the
nylon, indestructible, almost invisible black webbing which is
perfect for the job, on a freezing day just before the first snow
storm. The idea behind this was to prevent the heavy snow from 
breaking off any of the magnificent needles or needle parcels. 
It worked wonderfully last year - and I do it for my 9 upright yews, 
as well. Originally I wrapped each yew individually, but it took me
hours upon hours. Last time Jimmie suggested that we wrap all
nine as a unit, and it turned out to be fine. I think the netting comes
in a piece 14' x 14', since it is often used to cover a cherry tree or
berry patch, so it is very versatile. Maybe $7 or $8...?

But we looked out the window in dismay two days ago to see the 
webbing come loose and blowing like a flag!  Snow or no snow,
we had to save that umbrella pine, so we braved the freezing
winds and did the job. Getting the webbing off the tree so we could
wind it back on properly was a chore somewhat reminiscent of
taking out a mistake when making an argyle patterned sock -- one
cannot simply unravel the thing, for there are 9 colors wound on 
9 bobbins, and with each change of color to make the pattern, the
two threads are crossed over each other. In other words, one has to
"unknit" the sock back to the error.....  OK, I had cut the netting  into
2-foot widths, so we could "sculpture" the wrapping around the
conical tree. And we had joined the sections with dozens of bright
yellow wire ties from the kitchen baggie box..  And each yellow
wire had to be undone with mittens on -- and they're very short,
you will remember..  madness!  I'll have to stare at that kookie
repair job until April 15th, when I can be assured that there will
not be another snow storm. 

Plus -- one of my prize front rhododendrons looks like it has
pneumonia.  I'm scared... 

Never a dull moment, is there?

Penny, NY

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