Many Trails
Two trees and a garden...
by Adrien Taylor
Jun 05, 2014 | 1465 views | 0 0 comments | 32 32 recommendations | email to a friend | print
I have a dilemma in my backyard. Just a few yards from where I have been trying to get a tree started in the lawn for years now, two different varieties have sent up shoots. I shouldn’t say shoots. They are both about ten feet tall now, with little trunks of more than 1 inch in diameter. But both can’t live and thrive as close together as they are growing. One of the saplings is a sunburst locust. I have two good-sized ones in the backyard already. And then there is the place where I took out an unwanted volunteer several years ago, But the roots refuse to die.

The other is a mulberry. Also, just outside my bathroom window and smack against the house footings, there are several volunteer mulberry trees. There is a large one way out in front of the house. Annually, it has an abundance of fruit, which the birds love. They eat the fruit and spread the seeds far and wide by way of their purple poop. So we may have little mulberry trees all around the neighborhood.

Granddaughter Allyssa and her husband, Nate Keogh, have just moved into a new house, and I’d be mighty pleased if they wanted either or both of these trees for their yard. From my experiences of a couple of years ago, I know that trees of this size go for upwards of $100 (or maybe more, by now). The challenge is getting a big enough root ball when digging the little tree(s) up for transplanting. And then, it is now June, and April would have been a much better time to move them. By this fall, they may be 15 feet tall.

All this brings to my mind the bittersweet ballad of Barbara Allen. I won’t put down all the verses here, as the song goes on for some time, but the last says: “A rose grew from Sweet William’s grave; from Barbara’s grew a thorny brier. Entwined they grew into a lover’s knot to the top of the old church spire.”


Otherwise, out in the yard, my garden of two tomato plants and one pepper plant already has fruit. Sam always said that if he had ripe tomatoes by July 4, his garden was a success. I’m going to be close.

I’d like to have an eggplant plant, but have found none in town, and it’s awfully late to plant seeds. Let’s see: they take 90 days to fruition, so my first crop would be September. Looks like I’ll have to buy them again this year.

And then, there are zucchini, those delicious little rascals best eaten when about 6 inches long, but which tend to hide among the leaves until they are twice that size. And then there are squash bugs. I loved the Garrison Keillor segments on Prairie Home Companion when he talked about taking bags of zucchini around to all the neighbors’ houses and leaving them on the porches late at night. And the year his mother planted 40 tomato plants.

Enough already. Except, I forgot about squash blossoms. Not the necklaces, but the real thing. I read where they are good sautéed, so I tried it and they are.

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