Reality Check
Totally Worth the Time

The Pits!

When we moved into our house, 10 years ago, there were many, many (many) trees in our yard.  Most of them I could identify . . . but one of them. . . I could not.

It looked like a cherry tree.

But a GIANT cherry tree.

Cherry-looking leaves.  Cherry-looking bark.

But no blossoms!  And no cherries!

So, it just became a big Mystery Tree.  Right in the middle of my backyard.

Every once in a while, a big limb would come down.  Tom had to do a lot of pruning to keep the branches off the roof.  It was not really much to look at -- kind of misshapen and all.  But it provided nice shade, and was not a high-maintenance tree at all.

Until last year!

Last year, for some weird reason probably known only to tree experts, the cherry tree blossomed in the spring.  And then . . . cherries.  LOTS and LOTS of cherries. 

Turns out it was a black cherry tree.  And . . . What. A. Mess.

Late last summer, I had cherries EVERYwhere.  We tracked them through the house.  We tracked them on the carpets.  My patio was covered with purple juices and purple bird poop.  The birds had a field day, sure.  But. . .the cherries dropped into my pond.  The water turned purple.  The fish and the frogs died*.  It was a mess.

When I would tell people that the tree had never produced fruit in the 9 years we'd been at the house (trust me -- I'd remember!), they'd just kind of look at me like I was nuts.  But tree people tell me that a diseased/dying tree might have a "last hurrah" and try to reproduce like crazy before it's last gasp.  I think that's what my tree was doing -- trying to create a new generation of black cherry trees.

Anyway.  I couldn't have a mess like that again.  So, like George Washington, I cut down that cherry tree!  (Actually, I didn't do it.  But I had it cut down about a month ago.)

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I hate cutting down a tree. . . but this one was, suddenly, a problem!

Now, I have new problems.  Like . . . a lot less shade in my backyard.  (I had the tree guy leave a sizeable stump.  I'm going to do something garden-y with it.  Although I'm not quite sure what yet.)

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My biggest problem now, though . . . is this . . .

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I have millions and millions (and millions) of cherry trees sprouting up everywhere in my yard and gardens!  My garden beds are loaded with tiny black cherry trees!

Fortunately, they are easy to pull.  But it is a never-ending task this year -- and one that will keep me busy all season long.

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Because. . .

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It's the pits!

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* Black cherry pits contain cyanide.  The fruit is safe to eat; the pits are not.  My pond was LOADED with cherry pits.  My fish and my frogs, sadly, didn't make it.

Comments

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margene

The tree could have become a much bigger problem had you left it. Are your new trees from pits or from shoots sent out by the roots. I have no knowledge of how trees do their thing. Good luck with all the tree pulling! You'll have a busy summer.

Marilyn

Uff. What a mess. It might be a good thing that they are new little trees that are easy to pull rather than shoots from the roots that are almost impossible to get rid of...don't ask me how I know! o.0
A lady in town has a tree stump in her front yard and puts beautiful potted flowers on it every summer.

Patty

Oh now I'll be watching for tree stump uses all summer! And so sorry you'll be doing all that pulling!

Maggie

Reminds me of my maple tree. We abort THOUSANDS of baby maples every year.

Suzy

Well...shoot!...(get it).

kmkat

If you have woodpeckers they will love that stump after it gets some bugs in it. You could plant morning glories/ivy/Virginia creeper/some other vine to grow over it. You could put a birdbath on top. If it is easily viewable from the house you could hang a big thermometer on it. You could have a chainsaw *artist* carve it into something significant to you.

bonny

Checkers or a chair for your tree stump?
http://www.likemerchantships.org/2007/07/what-to-do-with-stump.html?m=1

http://media-cache-ec3.pinimg.com/originals/a9/0a/bb/a90abbf9f19289d170feabea38cb816a.jpg

Mary

ok, I can't wait to see what you do with that stump! love the idea of checkers :-) in our old house we had oak trees; picking out little oaks was a non-stop battle (good luck!)

Cheryl S.

We put a table top on one of our tree stumps.

I also had a cherry tree that the previous owner of the house told me had never had cherries (she was the one who planted it). She said she found out later that it needed a pollinator, and there evidently wasn't one in the neighborhood. I cut that sucker down.

Cookie

Like you could EVER forget purple bird poop! (I still have flashbacks to the summer of blackberry bird poop & all those seedlings...)

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