November 20, 2009

Did you know it's a good idea to plant trees in the late fall?

A nursery delivery this morning at Meadhouse:

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Nice work by Steve and Claudio of Johnson's Nursery.

First, big, lovely elm. It's a New Horizon elm, a disease-resistant cultivar developed here at the University of Wisconsin:

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And over on the other side of that place Wisconsinites call the "terrace," a serviceberry:

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The trees will settle in over the winter. We'll watch them through the windows. (Meade placed them to make the best views from particular windows where we sit inside. That's the right way to do it, you know.) We'll watch the snows come and go and look forward to the beauty of spring. But today, at Meadhouse, it already looks like spring.

57 comments:

traditionalguy said...

What does that cost? My guess is $1,000.00. Trees are good friends.

Maguro said...

Absolutely right. Planting in the spring is less than ideal, yet that's when everyone feels like planting trees. Serviceberry is a great choice too, a native plant with beautiful fall colors. The berries are also quite good.

Bissage said...

That’s a nice hole.

Dirt’s not half-bad, either.

Congratulations on the new additions to your family.

May you enjoy them, in good health, for many years to come.

TMink said...

Meadhouse is such a comfy name. It makes me thirsty.

Trey

Ann Althouse said...

@traditionalguy Good guess. They were large and really nice looking trees, and the nursery is 80 or so miles away. Meade dug the holes. The price was $900-something.

traditionalguy said...

I hate digging holes. Did Meade use Tom Sawyer's Method and let others have some of his fun? Of course in atlanta we have a red clay and stone mountain granite rocks mixture to dig out of our holes. Don't forget to water them well and often and mix in some miracle grow. That's viagra for plants.

Fred4Pres said...

Serviceberry, Amalanchier candadensis and its related cultivars and subspecies, are an excellent choice of suburban tree in North America.

miller said...

I'm glad to see people planting elms that are resistant to Dutch Elm Disease. Such a beautiful tree destroyed by a nasty fungus.

Fred4Pres said...

Meadehouse does sound like a brew pub like establishment.

Titus said...

Does Meadsy Poo work?

ricpic said...

Did they make the hole twice as deep and twice as wide and then when they shoveled the earth back in did they throw in some Miracle-Gro?

Paddy O. said...

Love this.

Meade was transplanted himself, and I can't help think this is such a symbolic picture of him planting his own roots, being truly Meade.

May these find their peace quickly, may their roots grow deep and strong. May the trees find great growth and be a testimony to the joy of life for all who see them. Offering beauty, and shade, and comfort to people and animals alike.

May these trees be a testimony to the Meadehouse, may it take on these same traits of strength and depth and beauty now and far into the future.

WV: gampamu. Sounds like a good final, mystical sounding word to add to a planting of trees blessing.

Gampamu to you and to all of us.

Fred4Pres said...

American Elms are wonderful trees, but it is the American Chestnut that is most endangered and needing of restoration.

To put its loss in perspective, American Chestnuts were 20-25% of all trees east of Mississippi before the Chestnut blight wiped out almost all of them (its shrubby cousin the Chickopin is resistant, but almost all of the big trees died).

Big American Chestnuts only exist in any numbers in stands planted by pioneers in the American West where the blight never spread (the Great Plains and Rockies blocked it).

Chestnuts are far more productive than oaks and acorns so the loss to wildlife has been enormous. Many animals would gorge on chestnuts in order to get through the winter.

Patm said...

Nice comment, PaddyO.

My BIL always told us to plant trees in late fall. We have a beautiful pear thing that goes white in spring, and crimson/gold in autumn. It's glorious and right outside the window.

Good work, Meade. And I love the "Meadehouse" bit. Althouse gets the blog in her name, Meade gets the house! :-)

Fred4Pres said...

American Chestnut, Castanea dentata

Patm said...

Fred4Pres, is it not possible to buy and plant these Chestnut trees anymore? We need to pull down a huge oak that's sick. I wouldn't mind a nice "spreading chestnut tree" in its place.

DBrooks17 said...

You didn't use Johannsen's. For shame.

Richard said...

$900-something?!! Do you know how many children in Africa that would feed?

Hey, where I come from if you don't know that fall is a great time for planting trees then you're not permitted use of a shovel. The knowledge is self-evident.

I love people who think Spring, so I guess I love you both. Cheers!

Fritz said...

That is municipal property, did you get permission to plant there?

k*thy said...

A landscape friend once told me the best reason to plant in the fall is because everything's on sale (do you have to get an ok from the city to plant on the terrace?).

My guy's handier around the house than the yard - one reason I'm getting a landscape yard design for Christmas.

rocketeer67 said...

That is municipal property, did you get permission to plant there?

That was my though too, Fritz. Planning geek. I hope so, those are very nice trees and a nice addition to the neighborhood.

John Lynch said...

I once planted a tree on Earth Day by accident. My Dad and I got a good laugh out of it.

EDH said...

That looks like one of those cartoon holes that you can pick-up and move.

chuckR said...

I remember walking along my grandparents street at noon on sunny 1950's summer days, completely in the shade of street elms. All long gone. I think elms are the most graceful large American tree. Its a shame that my kids have a better idea what a baobab looks like. Good luck with your resistant cultivar. I admire your optimism.

wv - noman - nope, too easy

edutcher said...

I like the fact that you took pictures of Meade supervising.

You love being married, don't you?

WV "takeden" What an Army sergeant from Brooklyn says on a long march.

peter hoh said...

Is it safe to assume that the root flare was inspected?

Ann Althouse said...

@Fritz We had a whole consultation with the City Forester!

@Paddy O Thank you for the prayer.

michaele said...

Gosh, I'm looking with concern at those wires that seem to sit above the general area of where your beautiful tree will grow. My comfort is that Meade must have thought this thing through and the eventual height of the tree will not prove a problem.
This past summer, our electric company was doing some rewiring along our country road and in preparation, they sent a crew out to cut limbs and even take down long standing trees. It was brutal and gut wrenching to see magnificent tree limbs get butchered. I don't want that in your tree's future.

Chip Ahoy said...

* glees *

former law student said...

Hopefully the sight of the elm will persuade your neighbors to all get one. Chicago was full of elm-arched streets, beautiful in the summer.

Spring is good for planting bare-root.

chuck b. said...

Be careful when you're pruning around those power-lines in a few years.

The cost benefits of fall planting are hugely under-appreciated. Big secret, now blown.

former law student said...

Wow. Turkish pornospam.

chickenlittle said...

Did you know it's a good idea to plant trees in the late fall

@Meade:
What about flowering vines? We have a trumpet vine that we planted that I've been wanting to transplant to a sunnier location. I was going to wait until spring as I thought that was the best time. Is fall actually better?

Deborah said...

Barukh Atah Adonai Eloheinu Melekh Ha'olam oseh ma'aseh b'reshit.
B'rukha At Yah Eloheinu Ruach Ha'olam osah ma'aseh b'reshit.

Blessed are You, Adonai our God, Ruler of the universe, who continually does the work of creation.

Ralph L said...

A common error in gardening shows and books is the advice to plant at the original ground level of the new plant. If you've dug a decent hole (this one is marginal, but you've got good soil), the plant will eventually settle *below* the soil line, which is rarely good for the plant.

Ralph L said...

So Meade is marking his territory. It would be a lot cheaper if he just peed in the corner.

knox said...

I once planted a tree on Earth Day by accident.

LOL.

Joan said...

I'm with Chip, and I love how he expressed it: *glees* indeed. Congratulations to you both.

I love trees. Last Christmas I got a peach tree and a fig tree, and for Mother's Day I got a pomegranate tree (they're all small and manageable at this point.) It makes me inexplicably happy to see them in our yard.

Paddy, that was a beautiful benediction. It got quite dusty in here as I read it.

Meade said...

Thanks, everyone, for all the nice comments.

tradguy, The total cost, including delivery and tax, was $1,006.47. We got great value.

Titus, Do I work? You don't consider pointing and barking orders work? *lowers and shakes head in exasperation*

ricpic, Three times as wide and exactly deep enough. No miracle-nothing.

Thanks, Paddy O., very nice.

Nice American Chestnut info, Fred.

DBrooks17, None of the local nurseries had what we needed.

Fritz and rocketeer67, In selecting and locating the two tree species, I consulted with a City of Madison Forestry Specialist three weeks ago. Everything was done according to city rules, I applied for and received a city permit. Madison has been a Tree City for 20 years, and it shows in the care and pride taken by Madisonians in their many tree-lined streets and avenues and in the high standards of workmanship displayed by those in the profession. Btw, since moving to Madison in August, I have been continually impressed by the excellent craftsmanship of Wisconsin tradespeople. (Especially the beer brewers.)

peter hoh, Root flares detected, inspected, and duly respected.

michaele, 1. According to the City of Madison Forestry Specialist, the wires are low voltage and not a concern. 2. At maturity, the Serviceberry will barely reach the height of the wires. 3. The elm has a vase-shaped habit that will not interfere with the wires.

Chip, *mirths*

fls, Very true about bare-root. Spring-planting is also the exception to the rule for Eastern Redbud and Oak.

chicklit, I would go ahead and move that trumpet vine now, if it were mine, but I can't imagine it being set back by a spring transplant if that's what you end up doing.

Deborah, Nice. Thank you, Rabbi.

Ralph L, Good point. Settling has been factored in. Also, it's been well-known since medieval times that man water is a tonic for all fruit trees.

knox, KNOX!

Joan, *joys*

HelenParr said...

Good thing the 'nursery delivery' was trees. Otherwise, it would've been all poopy diapers, 3 a.m. feedings and pabulum-puking around the alt Meadhaus.

Ann Althouse said...

"So Meade is marking his territory. It would be a lot cheaper if he just peed in the corner."

Oh, but he does pee in the corner!

Titus said...

I totally want Meadsy Pooh's job.

I would be a wonderful husband Althouse.

Heading out for fresh vegies over rice tonight-gag.

It's hard being married to a vege.

William said...

What a fine street. It reeks of nostalgia for a perfect childhood. It would have been a safe place to learn how to ride a bike and play touch football in the dusk. Enough space for adventure but with trees and lawns and nice homes to embrace you with civilization. Meade's got the look of a 50's sitcom dad: dependable and competent about the small details of ordinary life. There's probably no such thing as The Great Good Place, but this is certainly a finely crafted reproduction.

Fred4Pres said...

Patm said...
Fred4Pres, is it not possible to buy and plant these Chestnut trees anymore? We need to pull down a huge oak that's sick. I wouldn't mind a nice "spreading chestnut tree" in its place.


Depends where you live. If there is blight there, an American Chestnut might grow a few years and then die. A European chestnut is somewhat more resistant of the blight but not completely (Europeans and Americans are both large trees). The Chinese and Japanese chestnuts are resistant (mostly) but smaller and less picturesque.

If you live in a blight area (east of the Mississippi) I would contact the Chestnut Society or order a European variety. The nuts take a few years to start producing but are excellent.

Steve Pierson said...

I did not know that planting trees in the fall was a good idea. Several nuggets of good information harvested from Althouse today. On the hunt for a chestnut tree tomorrow. Idaho needs more trees.

chickenlittle said...

What a fine street. It reeks of nostalgia for a perfect childhood.

Agreed. It looks a lot like where I grew up in nearby Middleton.
The sad thing is that according to one resident, there are too few kids in that idyllic neighborhood. Link.

Meadhouse should adopt!

Ann Althouse said...

"I totally want Meadsy Pooh's job."

Only Meadsy Pooh can handle Meadsy Pooh's job. Do you have any idea all that is involved? I submit that you do not.

Ann Althouse said...

"Meadhouse should adopt!"

We thought of being foster parents. Or babysitting!

Brad V said...

Great to see it's a new elm - bravo.

peter hoh said...

Speaking of gardeners peeing. . . .

peter hoh said...

Titus, try roasting some of them veggies. Four hundred degrees can really make a difference.

I started making the veg stock following Bittman's recipe. It's as good as meat-based stock for flavoring.

PatCA said...

What a lovely Midwestern picture of all. Good luck with the trees! Something to look forward to after the snows.

kentuckyliz said...

Deborah--beautiful. In the Catholic Mass, at the consecration of the gifts, the priest uses a Jewish derived blessing:

"Blessed are you, Lord, God of all creation; through Your goodness we have this bread to offer, which earth has given and human hands have made. It will become for us the bread of life.

All respond: Blessed be God forever.

Blessed are you, Lord, God of all creation; through Your goodness we have this wine to offer, fruit of the earth and work of human hands; it will become our spiritual drink.

All respond: Blessed be God forever."

I always think of the Jewish blessings at this moment in the Mass.

Beth said...

What a warm and inviting thread.

I can't help myself, though, and add that "serviceberry" makes me think of Jean Brodie, commenting "Chrysanthemums - such serviceable flowers!"

chickenlittle said...

We thought of being foster parents. Or babysitting!

What a wonderful thought Prof. Althouse. Bless you and Meade!

Deborah said...
This comment has been removed by the author.
Fred4Pres said...

The elm, Ulmus americana, is a great street tree (while chestunts are good, they are very messy in the fall and drop a lot of chestnuts and the burr coats). A wise pick by Meade.