Wednesday, August 22, 2012


A couple years ago, a maintenance crew from the city came and “trimmed” our six beautiful maple trees, cutting them back so severely on the sides that faced the street it made me cry.   The street sweeper driver had complained that our trees, and other trees in town were in his way when he swept the street.

Just a few days ago, a local tree trimmer was in the neighborhood trimming some trees down the street from us, and he stopped by, wanting to know if we would like our maples trimmed.  He promised to trim them carefully and get them away from the power lines before the city came around and had another go.

I watched him Sunday as he got to work.  He gazed up at the first maple, making mental notes-and then he donned climbing gear and got to work removing suckers, dead branches and extraneous limbs.  By the end of the next day, each tree was perfect!


Our maples are beautiful again!


We also have two spruce trees.  They have been on this property since at least 1947-a former owner who lived in this house back then stopped by last spring and told me he remembered them.  That makes them at least 65 years old and probably much older than that.  Unfortunately, their future is not looking too bright.  They have been looking sickly for awhile now, and the diagnosis we’ve been given is that they are infected with the spruce bud worm-a fatal parasite.  Along with the pine beetle, these two pests  are devastating the forests around here-and from what I’ve read will in fact wipe out around 85% of the trees in the next 15 years. (When we drove to Leavenworth a couple weeks ago, I was alarmed by the number of dead trees I saw!)

We have two options for our spruce trees.  Cut them down, or for the same cost, try to save them with a combination of root injections and pesticide spray.  While I hate to see trees cut down, I also hate the thought of spraying chemicals on them that would probably be toxic to any living creatures who come near them.  But we have to do something-I feel we have a responsibility to the other coniferous trees in the area who might not be infected with the spruce bud worm yet.

And so the spruce trees have to go.  We will replace them in the spring with two new trees.

And while we are on the subject of trees…

I finally made a new bag yesterday!  I hadn't used my little Singer Featherweight in so long that it was covered in spider webs! 

Here is my newest creation, the Palm Tree Market Bag.  Recognize the fabric?  I had a remnant left over from the living room curtains.




I just love this barkcloth.  It has the most beautiful combination of colors on it, including pink.  Even the Snapshot Sailors approve!

Hope the week is going well for all of you.  Have a wonderful day!


  1. 85% of the trees?!? Sob. That's a terrible bug :-(

    Loving the new bag!

  2. Lisa-it makes me sob too. It will really change the way this area looks in the future.

    Thanks too-for liking my new bag!

  3. There are a few trees in our nearby walk that just look awful - I'm not sure if they're pine or spruce, but the needles are completely brown. I hate to see them cut down, too, but I think it's time for them to go. I think our city has them marked for destruction as there are big white X's on them.

  4. Melissa-I'm the same way. I hate to see trees go, but sometimes it's inevitable. I worry about ours falling over on our house or something after they are dead. That would be very bad:(

  5. Love that you paired your gorgeous fabric up with a pop of pink .. love it love it!!

    Your tree trimmer is a master! I know what you mean with the bugs .. my beautiful Montana is decimated with spruce bud worm & pine beetle .. the problem is when they die & dry out is is A+++ for fire... and that is what they have had this year.. sad.

  6. That bag is gorgeous! Valerie, you mix the fabrics in such an appetizing way...!!!

    I hate to see trees cut down or trimmed.

  7. Lisa-thanks! The bag was so fun to make, too:)

    Thank goodness for the tree trimmer. His timing was perfect. I can't imagine our poor trees if the city hacked at them again.

    The decimation of the western forests is so sad. It won't be the same out here if they disappear. And in just 15 years, too! And as for fires, it will be so bad...

  8. Thanks Dawn!!

    And I knew you were a fellow tree lover too:)

  9. So sorry about your pines. We have the ash tree borer devesating trees in our area.
    But your maples look lovely and so is that cute market bag!

    Kimberly :)

  10. Love the bag!! We've had so many trees cut down this year in our city because of a bore. It's been really sad to see even though the city replaced them with new very young trees.