Relative Something

*this* John W. Hays' take on things and experiences

That Time

with 3 comments

It’s that time again. Now is the time of year when it is very easy to see the common buckthorn leaves in the woods, because they stay green longer than our other trees. Buckthorn is a non-native invasive tree that makes a great hedge, but given free rein, can block out all others here and take over the landscape.dscn5338e

I let the buckthorn get out of hand on our previous tiny lot in the suburbs, so I have first-hand experience on what can happen, and what it takes to eradicate it. Now we have a LOT more property to police, which makes it a difficult thing to control, but I still want to put effort toward keeping it at bay.

There are still a few other plants that also have their leaves, so it isn’t as simple as pulling up or cutting down anything that is still green. Most of them are relatively easy to recognize as something other than buckthorn, but there is one in our woods with leaves that look surprisingly close to those of the buckthorn.

dscn5342eUsually, if I’m not absolutely sure, I just skip over it for the time being. Once you know what buckthorn leaves look like, it is pretty clear when you come upon them.

The saplings are rather easy to just pull out of the ground, and the area where I was working was very wet, so that gave me even more inspiration to try pulling most of what I found.

Some were just too big, obviously ones I hadn’t properly dealt with a year ago to have grown so large. Those I had to cut down with a saw.

The pulling is just so much quicker and more rewarding. I knock the dirt off the roots and dangle them over some nearby branches to wither and dry. Delilah loves to help with the root pulling. She claws away at the dirt and then grabs the roots in her teeth and pulls.

Sometimes we end up pulling against each other.

dscn5344eIt is a serious full-body workout to pull the bigger ones. It ends up becoming a challenge for me to see if I can dislodge the next size larger trees by gripping them with my legs bent and then trying to stand up. I need my legs to do the bulk of the work, not my back.

At one point when I felt my legs tiring of the effort, I looked over to see how Delilah was holding up. She was sound asleep in a nap.

Yeah, it is really an exhausting exercise.












Written by johnwhays

October 23, 2016 at 6:00 am

3 Responses

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  1. Goats. I understand that goats love buckthorn. They don’t get the roots, but they take them down to the ground level. Added benefit: goats are also good eatin’!


    October 23, 2016 at 10:03 am

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