would YOU cut down this tree?

Posted:
in General Discussion edited January 2014
After receiving several (quite nice) tips about paving I realized that I should put a note in front of this post explaining that this JUST MIGHT BE an allegorical tale.....now back to my story.



Hey.

I've got this tree in woods behind my house.

One day it's going to fall right onto my house (and a couple of my neighbors' houses too) there's no doubt about THAT.



The part of the woods that it's in has pretty soft, sandy dirt and there are about a good half-dozen other trees in the same area. About ten years ago when I moved into the neighborhood I had some problems with the same tree when a storm blew through, but I thought that I had everything worked out and I pretty much left it alone...just kept my eye on it.



Apparently everything WASN'T worked out, because this thing is seriously afflicted now.



Every time I walk under the tree to take an up-close look, it starts dropping branches at me and I have to back up or take one to the noggin'. This doesn't seem to bother my neighbors though, even when limbs fall over into their yard!



Well, I got out there last week and started to cut it down, but the frikkin' neighbors went apeshit on me....said I shouldn't cut it down. That there was no justification and it wasn't on my property. So I got them to come over and look at the tree. I made them look at the angle it was leaning and the direction it would fall. Hell, it'll totally wipe out one neighbor's garage and another neighbor's above-ground pool, no questions asked.



Anyway, they said that it looked safe and insisted that I put the chainsaw back in the shed.



LOOK, said I, the tree is SICK. It's infected with beetles. I need to cut it down before the beetles spread to the other trees in my yard...and before the beetles spread to THEIR trees. We've all known that the tree was a problem in the past and we tried to brace it up, but it's going to cause some damage...sooner than later.



These people are freaking INSANE! They said the tree is perfectly fine and that I should leave it alone.



So, like, I went over to the fence of one lady who kept screaming at me and asked her to look at the needles on the tree. They're BROWN lady, see? BROWN! The tree is DYING!!! I told her it was obvious.



She didn't think so.



No, instead she paid for some tree surgeon guy to come out to climb up the tree to look for the beetles. The Dumbass didn't find any either, he was too busy eating the fries from his Happy Meal and talking about how long the tree could live without any problems. Anyway, it doesn't surprise me that he didn't find any beetles; they've already burrowed into the heart of the tree. Where was he three weeks ago when I was watching all those bugs swarming around the tree?



I knew that I should've taken some pictures that day...but then all the neighbors would want to borrow my camera.



Damn.



Anyway, now the neighbors have gotten some crazy local bunch of tree-keepers who have chained themselves to the damned tree.



What in the HELL am I supposed to think about that?



The tree is still going to fall.

It's probably going to do it soon, and I'm not worried about those morons chained to the tree. I'm worried about my house, actually all the houses the tree might fall onto because I want my neighborhood's property values to remain stable.



Nobody else is going to look after my house for me, that's my responsibility. So I've decided to have it cut down professionally....one of those services that can take the tree down right where it stands without dropping pieces on anything else. A few of my neighbors agree and have said they'll chip in and help with the expenses.



Anybody else have a problem like this?

Can you blame me for cutting this tree down?

You might want to ask the people in YOUR neighborhood what they'd do in this situation.



Thanks in advance!



Your pal drewprops.com, spending his valuable time asking those hard hitting tree-related questions~
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Comments

  • Reply 1 of 22
    powerdocpowerdoc Posts: 8,123member
    Beware of this tree, it must be a evil tree sicking to hurt you.



    More seriously : ask the guy who inspected the tree to sign a paper declaring there is no danger. You will see, if he will be confident in what he say.

    I am not a wood specialist but i doubt that beetles eat trees.
  • Reply 2 of 22
    Pave over and build anew, baby. Something nice and asphalt covered will do the trick.





  • Reply 3 of 22
    Quote:

    Originally posted by ShawnPatrickJoyce

    Pave over and build anew, baby. Something nice and asphalt covered will do the trick.









    Ireland?
  • Reply 4 of 22




    Asphalt, baby. Can't extol the virtues of it anymore than I do.
  • Reply 5 of 22
    So is the tree still there or not?



    If it is and no one will let you get rid of it, either anchor it with cables or tell the neighbours that you'll plant a new one if you can cut this one down.



    If it's gone then that's probably a good thing. I'm dead against flatenning forests and such, but there's a big difference between destroying nature, and removing dead, rotting nature that's going to fall on your house and probably injure people.



    We had the opposite problem, we had trees down our access road (back alley or whatever you want to call it) but every time they started to show the slightest sign of disease one of the families decided it was entirely up to them to get them cut down.



    Andrew



    EDIT: Okay I'm not suggesting anything here, I took the tree metaphor literally, I'm still trying to work out what you guys actually mean.
  • Reply 6 of 22
    drewpropsdrewprops Posts: 2,321member
    ::sigh::

    I guess nobody understands allegory?
  • Reply 7 of 22
    sdw2001sdw2001 Posts: 18,012member
    Quote:

    Originally posted by drewprops

    ::sigh::

    I guess nobody understands allegory?






    I thought you were being literal. I'm not sure how we would have known otherwise.



    If you ARE being literal, I say hire someone to cut it down as you said. Let your neighbors "put their money where their mouths are" and take legal action. You can always say you felt it represented a "clear and present danger" to your home and property. Nothing like war/political analogies! More than likely they'll just be "beside themselves with anger " and do nothing.



    "Sir, the tree took provocative action and sought to posess biological weapons in the form of beatles."



    Remember the old adage: "It is always easier to apologize than ask permission".



    If you are NOT being literal, than I can only assume you feel there is a threat in your life you feel powerless to stop, such as Al Gore joinging Apple's board, for example.
  • Reply 8 of 22
    drewpropsdrewprops Posts: 2,321member
    Good idea, I put a little note in front of the story.



    Interesting that it's already been suggested that I



    a) pave over the tree and,

    b) cut it down and replace it with a nicer tree





    really interesting...
  • Reply 9 of 22
    Oh, right, when I was talking about the rotten trees in my back alley I really was talking about trees in a road behind my house, no more complex levels, don't get any ideas.



    We don't have to use obscure metaphors here, no-one's listening.



    Andrew
  • Reply 10 of 22
    airslufairsluf Posts: 1,861member
  • Reply 11 of 22
    You must live in a very strange neighborhood where one single tree can damage so many houses.
  • Reply 12 of 22
    Oh I get it. Took me a while... Also the best line to use is "I have no recolection of the events in question, Senator."
  • Reply 13 of 22
    rodukroduk Posts: 706member
    I think you're cutting the tree down because you want the wood.
  • Reply 14 of 22
    defiantdefiant Posts: 4,876member
    b) and a nice cheminée
  • Reply 15 of 22
    alcimedesalcimedes Posts: 5,486member
    the tree's probably sitting on vast amounts of oil.



  • Reply 16 of 22
    artman @_@artman @_@ Posts: 2,546member
    Quote:

    Originally posted by ColanderOfDeath

    You must live in a very strange neighborhood where one single tree can damage so many houses.





    Actually, it makes a point. I lived in the suburbs where most neighbors don't even know, much less ever see each other today. So when something does attract their attention they come out of their cocoons and find neighbors next store who have an observation that they can't relate to unless it effects them. And if it does they usually didn't give a shit. The other suburbanite just goes about what they believe is the solution to the problem. Then all hell breaks loose.



    \
  • Reply 17 of 22
    Quote:

    Originally posted by Artman @_@

    Actually, it makes a point. I lived in the suburbs where most neighbors don't even know, much less ever see each other today. So when something does attract their attention they come out of their cocoons and find neighbors next store who have an observation that they can't relate to unless it effects them. And if it does they usually didn't give a shit. The other suburbanite just goes about what they believe is the solution to the problem. Then all hell breaks loose.



    \




    Remeber the little note about allegory at the top...
  • Reply 18 of 22
    allegorically, you've painted yourself and your story in an interesting way.



    - a declared non-expert in tree health, landscaping, arborist, botanical impact of beetles, or any other relevant specialty to convey a deep understanding about anything but it's effect on your perceived property value... yet you feel your opinion is expert enough for you to justify whatever machiavellian result "benefits" you regardless of it's long term impact on drainage, shade, etc



    - refusal to accept the view of a "specialist", preferring your own admittedly zero-specialist "opinion" as the truth... (or refusal to provide evidence of alleged Beetles of Mass Destruction until the tree is dead and the point is moot)... unilateral action from a poorly informed vested interest, hmmm.



    - declared "up yours" policy as well as a demonstrated unwillingness to co-operate towards neighbours who may benefit from the shade offered by the tree, or the birds that live in the tree, or who might have some peripheral interest in the net property values of their nearby lots, or whose soil might be prevented from landslip by useful (but cleverly hidden) tree roots



    - unwillingness to consider non-violent options (anchor the tree, have it trimmed to remove sick branches or eliminate the risk of bits falling on you, deal with the beetles and keep the tree through environmentally friendly bug-spray or introducing sterile breeders [beetle regime change]). to the point of going out with the chainsaw on your own and forcing your neighbours to confront you to make their interest heard



    - no effort whatsoever to investigate deeper and discover the age of the tree, it's history in the neighbourhood/water table. (perhaps once there were many similar trees, and now it's the sole survivor in a tarmac wasteland... maybe critical for the survival of ecosystems other than the me-me-me attitude)



    - failure to comprehend the active role such a tree may have in preventing your house from being hit by lightning (removal of the high point might make you the new lightning rod)





    Took all the trees, put 'em in a tree museum...

    Charged all the people a dollar and a half, just to see 'em

    Don't it always seem to go, that you don't know what you've got till it's gone

    They paved paradise, and put up a parking lot.
    ~ Joni Mitchell



    out here on the west coast, trees don't just "belong" to the property owner (sometimes even if they originally planted them)... they belong to the whole community, and in some regional aboriginal cultures, they belong to the children's children (that acorn takes a while to make a shady oak)



    of course, we also have some 1500+year old forest giants...

    anybody who tried to take those monuments deserves to get staked out with honey for the fire-ants and grizzlies to properly punish



    are those the allegorical points you were hoping people got from this?





    was the tree-killing suggestion made by a woman named eve or a snake? beware bad advice.
  • Reply 19 of 22
    Quote:

    - refusal to accept the view of a "specialist", preferring your own admittedly zero-specialist "opinion" as the truth... (or refusal to provide evidence of alleged Beetles of Mass Destruction until the tree is dead and the point is moot)... unilateral action from a poorly informed vested interest, hmmm.



    Perhaps that is because he read the reports in the papers about how the tree specialist used to be a lawn care specialist, employed by the City. In his capacity as a lawn care specialist, he was responsible for watching for the notorious nukleeyurus wepponiccilus virus which can ravage entire lawns. He did a poor job in this capacity and without some fortuitous luck by some nieghbors who tore up an infected area to uh build a fence or something, the infected areas could have spread to the whole neighborhood. Could have been real messy but he didn't catch it. In other lawns to the East of there, people still feel there may be some strains of nukleeyurus wepponiccilus which the Dept of Lawn Care did not detect. So that may be the source of his lack of confidence in the former lawn care specialist. Some thing he is immune from accountability because he is a life long beaurocrat for the City, after serving as a beaurocrat in other suburbs previous to that.



    Quote:

    - declared "up yours" policy as well as a demonstrated unwillingness to co-operate towards neighbours who may benefit from the shade offered by the tree, or the birds that live in the tree, or who might have some peripheral interest in the net property values of their nearby lots, or whose soil might be prevented from landslip by useful (but cleverly hidden) tree roots



    Those all sound like nice things. But they can easily be recreated with another tree replaced the diseased one. The cost of cutting down and replacing it, if all goes well, would be much cheaper than repairing people's houses should the tree fall.



    Quote:

    - failure to comprehend the active role such a tree may have in preventing your house from being hit by lightning (removal of the high point might make you the new lightning rod)



    From my vantage point, it looks like his house is already much taller than the tree. And it already has a lightning rod on top. One of those cheesy looking ones that is shaped like the Eiffel tower.



    Quote:

    of course, we also have some 1500+year old forest giants...

    anybody who tried to take those monuments deserves to get staked out with honey for the fire-ants and grizzlies to properly punish



    This is offtopic but I can literally say that to the best of my knowledge the only species which live that long are Redwoods, Bristlecone pines and maybe Sequioas. None of those species have habitat which coincides with the grizzly's rather sparse remaining range. Not sure about the fire ants.



    Quote:

    out here on the west coast, trees don't just "belong" to the property owner (sometimes even if they originally planted them)...



    That's odd. Out on this part of the West Coast all the trees belong to Weyerhauser and they can damn well do what they want with htem.
  • Reply 20 of 22
    drewpropsdrewprops Posts: 2,321member
    Yeah.

    It was really interesting some of the answers I got before I went back and made clear that this was an allegorical story. And then everybody went back to their playbooks.



    First, I find out that I am Machiavellian.

    When did THIS happen?



    Second, I find out that I am in no way to be trusted in judging the health of trees or the identification of pestilential beetles even though I grew up in this neighborhood, played in those woods in my childhood and know what a sick tree looks like when I see one. As a matter of fact, I've been called to help a lot of those same neighbors cut down sick trees in their own backyards in the past. A few of the trees had fallen down and damaged their houses. They thanked me profusely for bringing my chainsaw to help them, as their own equipment was old, rusted or stolen by some of the neighborhood kids. They also thanked me for loaning them money to help repair some of the damage. Gosh, it felt good to be appreciated by my neighbors...I -love- this neighborhood!



    Third, I'm supposed to have ignored the tree surgeon's advice, but how can I respect his advice about this tree when he sees the bore holes, the sawdust and the sap weeping from the trunk and yet he tells me that he can't find any beetles. My neighbors told me to give him time, to let him keep looking for the beetles....but I couldn't wait.



    Yes, I've had the people start removing the tree anyway. Funny thing is, now the tree surgeon guy admits that he doesn't think that he could have found the beetles the way that he had to look, without cutting into the tree.



    Huh.

    That makes sense. That's why I couldn't wait any longer...it was common sense that he wouldn't find the beetles the way he was looking.



    And you know, I never threatened my neighbors with my chainsaw...where did THAT come from?



    Anyway, the tree is coming down as expected.



    I'm hoping to get the neighbors together to discuss the care and maintenance of the replacement tree. I really think that we need to find out what kind of tree would best live between the other trees in that area...you know, soil Ph and stuff like that.



    Anyway....my house has had problems with lightning since it was built, nothing new there. It's worth the trouble because it's the best damn house in the neighborhood and our family love living here.



    Hope you folks can drop by and visit one day soon, maybe we'll have a barbecue one weekend!



    that's an allegorical barbecue mind you....still, you bring the beer
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