Raining Chokos

This morning as I looked out across the garden to the mallee trees with rain drops decorating them, a bunch of New Holland Honeyeaters gathered and started to ‘shower’ themselves amongst the branches. Frolicking around to gather up all the rain drops and then shaking them off. They are the perfect trees for doing this it would seem given their fine leaves and branches. Something different to the bird bath by the nectarine tree. The photos really don’t do the moment any justice.

Sadly, only a couple of hours after taking these photos I was having lunch and heard a loud crack. I kind of knew what it sounded like and rushed to the back window to be confronted by this.

Not good. So the better part of the afternoon was spent clearing up the limbs and mulching the smaller branches. Wondering what I was going to do about the rest of the trees. It was inevitable this would happen and only the other week I trimmed large branches from the tree in the chook pen. So, I am pondering their fate.

Options: prune and kind of coppice them so they bush out from the trunk and fill the space.
They are the most brilliant of privacy screens which is important now that there are tenants in the house at the back.

The other option is perhaps a lattice frame work fitted to the fence, but I really don’t like the look or the price. But it would be an “instant” kind of fix for the privacy situation.

Another option is to remove the trees altogether and plant the natives that I have been growing as plan B. Kind of like a succession planning for the day that this happened – only it happened so soon!

I could also plant out the lemon tree and some other fruit trees.

I could replace them all with my aquaponics that I have been planning only that doesn’t fit with the initial plan and was more of a wild thought. Maybe another trellis with kiwifruit?

I am also reluctant to do anything except cut them back and start to coppice them and watch what they do. This way I can always remove them completely if they don’t do what I had intended for them and it gives me the winter to see what the sunlight does. It will allow a lot more light into the garden and it will be interesting to see what effect this has. In that respect the whole incident is a plus in so far as confronting the inevitable sooner than later.

The other thing is – what the neighbours might do given that they will now have us looking down onto the back of the house and their little patio area. If they are like all our other neighbours, they won’t go outside all that much and keep their blinds closed, so it wouldn’t really matter.

Still, watch and learn. I picked up the chokos that had rained down everywhere and took some to my dad for salad and probably curries. The rest of the vine went into the compost bin and the sweet potato vine that was growing up into the smaller trees that was damaged is buried roughly into the garden and straw to see if it takes. After all, that’s how I got it going in the first place, from pieces of vine.

Here is the hole that is left. I shudder to think what it would be like with the rest of the trees down. Almost straight away after I was out there cutting it up the little Silvereyes were out there singing away. They have lost so many trees over the last twelve months here it would be sad to not have anything larger than a bush to have them hang out in.

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