...If *someone* is playing a joke on you?
Yesterday, I decided to prune down a volunteer mulberry tree that had shot up and was shading the back of the Spiral Garden a little more than I wanted.
I was going to cut the vigorous main leader that was leaning over the garden, and allow an upright growing, less vigorous branch to take over. But as I was cutting it, I realized the part I was cutting was a little too big for me to handle as it came down, so decided to cut the branches as far as I could reach first. Lop, lop, lop... So easy because mulberry is softwood... and... Wait! -- as I'm putting pressure on the loppers to cut -- Isn't THIS the branch I was going to keep? ...LOP.....
Alright, I'll just have to keep this other tiny branch... Oh wait, I'd already started cutting the leader trunk and the branch is ABOVE the cut...
...and so as I was desperately trying to figure out a way to save what would now end up a "topless stump" that is nevertheless about 8 feet up in the air (I was standing on a bench to prune)... IT STARTS TO POUR In no time at all, I'm drenched, the tools (three kinds of saw and a lopper and a pruner) are drenched. My safety glasses are streaming and I cannot see but I had a half cut upper leader to deal with.
Arrgh fine! What kind of a joke is this!? Lop of the rest of the side branches and finish the saw cut. Trim a bit but not as well as I would have, gather up the tools and hustle back into the house.
The mulberry is actually growing from under the bottom rail of the picket fence, so it's probably best not to let it stay, but that's besides the point.
As I was making my morning stroll around the garden, I noticed some pretty gray feathers tipped in orange red. When I focused on looking for them, there were dozens of these feathers. I think they are cardinal's. I looked around but didn't find any other evidence of foul ( ) play. I decided to gather up the feathers that were threatening to blow away in the breeze and give them to one of my daughters.
So I meticulously picked up every one I could find, going around to the other side of the fence, etc., then I rinsed them off and brought them in the house to wash with shampoo so she could do whatever she wanted with them. I would say I had enough that once dry, they would have made a puffy gray and orange-red mound in my hand.
I had the sudsy water in a yogurt cup on the counter, stirred the feathers, then reached for the faucet handle to turn it off... And my left hand awkwardly caught the lip of the yogurt cup and DUMPED THE CONTENTS IN THE SINK WHILE THE WATER WAS RUNNING
I watched the pretty feathers swirl around the running water and go down the drain. No way to prevent them.
...after that, there were only 3 feathers left in the yogurt cup that I had desperately snatched back up. Very funny.
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You are right about that. I was looking at "the stumpy" and thinking that now that it doesn't have a tall-growing leader, I'm going to have fun with this tree by keeping it pruned short and manageable. It's not in my espalier orchard fence row, but I'll treat it like one and see what I can do with it.