The Tree Whisperer…

So last year my wife and I decided to plant some trees in our back yard to, hopefully, some day give us lots of color in the Fall. Of course, we also wanted some shade in the summer but when you live in Texas, that goes without saying. So I found this place online that sells really cool, somewhat exotic trees. I would like to say that “we” decided on the trees but Mary Kate kept saying “BONSAI” and going Karate Kid on me whenever I wanted to talk about it so she was of no help what so ever. So “I” decided on the Autumn Blaze Maple and the Autumn Purple Ash. Both awesome trees.

So I order these trees online and it says it will take about a month for them to arrive. When they finally did arrive, I was a little shocked and disappointed. First, they came in two seperate boxes and when I opened them, they both had the roots in little ziploc bags with mostly melted ice. Second, they were just a couple of sticks. The Maple was about 2 ft long and the Ash was about 1 foot long. No branches, no leaves – just two sticks with dirt on one end. I was a little disappointed with how little they were too but at the same time, I was looking forward to a day 50 years from now when I could tell my neighbors grandkids that I remember when that tree was just a little 1 foot long stick. Anyway, there was plenty of disappointment to go around when it came to the delivered product.

So the trees came with directions that said I should put them in a pot with really rich soil close to where they would be planted so they could acclimate for a month or so. Mission accomplished on that. It also said to give them lots of water for the first few months. Mission accomplished there too. I eventually did put both trees in the ground.

Fast forward a few months and the Maple starts growing taller and growing leaves right away. I would bet it has grown two feet in it’s first year. The Ash on the other hand, doesn’t appear to have grown an inch and all last year it only produced one leaf. Eventually, as Fall and Winter set in, both trees lost their leaves. Fast forward a few more months to Spring of this year and the Maple took off like gang busters already growing about a foot and it has maybe 100 or so leaves on it. The Ash on the other hand, looked like just a little stick in the ground.

My wife taunted me and told me that my stick was dead and that I should get a new one. I assured her that the tree was in there and just needed some proper care and maintenance. So I fertilized the area and started watering a lot. Almost a month to the day that my wife called me a tree killer, I am happy to report that the little Ash has grown a solid six inches and in addition to the 20 or so leaves it is currently sporting, there are new leaves popping out almost every day! I totally saved that tree’s life and it feels great!

brian

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