Tuesday, December 22, 2009

Another Close Call

My youngest boy Lee purchased a house back during the summer. It was in a mature woodlot. Since then there has been 4 trees that have fallen. Two smaller trees were destroyed in the process. This latest downed tree, shown in these two pictures, was actually touching the house. The other 3 were not that surprising. They were decayed, leaning, and recently exposed to wind throw. The only problem with this pine was recent exposure and perhaps a restricted root zone. (I still haven't decided if there was an old road or just a terrace on the back side of this tree.) It was a severe wind that brought it down. In nearby towns, the power was knocked out to thousands of people. Hope this is the last one for awhile. There are only two or three real threats to the house and they look in fairly good shape. There is a white oak that could cause problems. It has a natural lean and would create a glancing blow to the house if it went that way.

Big Tree

I took this picture about 3 years ago. This post oak is the biggest tree I have ever cut. For comparison, the bar on the Stilh chain saw is 18 inches long. I don't remember the exact diameter but I think it was in the high 40's. I had only learned how to cut a tree larger than twice the bar lenght a few weeks earlier. This tree was 134 years old at least. The center decay prevented an exact age. In the course of cutting and splitting it, I found two bullets, two nails and two eyehooks. There were also two seperate colonies of carpenter ants.

High Tunnel from Local wood

My post have been rare this fall because of my work schedule. Here is the latest project I have been working on at the Elma C Lomax incubator farm. This is a high tunnel about 96 long by 30 wide. A high tunnel is similar to a greenhouse but without a heating system. You can't grow warm season crops all winter but it extends the season early and late. (I also have a high tunnel at my house. I picked greenbeans for my own use until December 1.) I did a lot of the construction on this tunnel but haven't done much with the crops. The farmers I am working with have it almost fully planted by mid December. We chose oak boards since they are locally available. I suspect they are a more environmentally sound choice. They are cheaper anyway. Construction started on this tunnel at Elma C Lomax farm incubator in September and the ends were enclosed in December. The sides have a salvaged automatic pulley system that was salvaged from a poultry house.