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Thursday starts the first day of tagging field grown trees. You can tag the trees in the field from the first of October, until it is digging time. Tagging the trees in the field had been a tradition for over 25 years. I have had people drive from as far as San Diego. One year a computer software CEO flew in from Chicago to tag trees. Tagging begins when I open the gates at 8:00am (although people get here early and wait in their cars.) I usually open a little early. Also, I will have hot coffee and donuts until there all gone. If you do not make it on the first of October, that’s okay because I have plenty of trees to choose from. Traditionally, since it is the first available day to tag, it is quite busy. Remember you can tag trees any time until digging begins, which is usually from about mid January – mid April. I hope to see you soon! I also cut off some of the air – layered pines and placed them into 6 inch pots. I looked back on my blog and I originally did the air – layers in late May. That means that some of the air -layers rooted in only four months! I took pictures and will post them on the blog soon. George
Today we sold one of my fathers collected California junipers. (What am I doing open on a Sunday?) A Young couple came by on Friday and was very interested in my fathers juniper. The juniper was placed into a growing can about 5 years ago. We put the tree back into the can from a pot to regain the trees strength. The tree has now fully recovered and is looking good. We shaped the tree about 6 months ago and have not touched the tree since. The foliage was overgrown and needed to be rewired. The young man asked if my Dad would sell the tree. I told him that my Dad would sell the tree if the price were right. The young man said he would think about it and let me know on Sunday. Today the young man came back and made my Dad an offer. My Dad accepted. The tree is a nice medium sized tree and the young man got an excellent tree for a good price. I gave the young man pointers on where we were headed with the trees design. It was sad to see a nice tree leave the collection. However, my Dad explained why he sold the tree. My father has a fairly large collection and he would tell you that a number of his trees have been neglected. He works at the nursery 30 – 40 hours a week and has not spent much time with his own trees. He said that the young man really showed the love and reverence for the tree and that the tree would improve in the young mans care. It is better to let an old friend go, then to keep it and to let the tree deteriorate. The young man loaded the tree in his Honda civic next to his young daughter. I shook his hand and he drove away. Maybe our paths will cross again and I will see the next chapter in the trees life.
The weather this summer has been a roller coaster. First we started out with the typical weather pattern of fog in the morning followed by mild summer temperatures. Then we got a heat wave for a few days followed by cool temps. Then we received normal weather for a few weeks followed by a week of temperatures in the 90’s. Then we got our normal temperatures, followed by cooler weather. Since we have had such an up and down pattern, the trees do not know what season it is. The maples dropped there leaves 2 weeks ago after we had our hot spell followed by the cool temperatures. I have crabapples in the field that have fruit on them that are starting to flower. I also have dwarf cherries starting to flower. They think it is spring. The quince have leaves that are burnt from the heat wave we received two weeks ago. Now that the temperature is normal, they are starting to push growth. The dwarf apricots dropped most of there leaves and are starting to leaf out again! What is going on with our weather. Someone is having fun at the switch.
The dreaded utility room sink is finally conquered. As I put on the finishing touches, problems kept cropping up. The last of these annoyances was that the trap for the sink did not line up with the pipes in the wall. Why should it? Also, the pipe from the sink is 1 1/4 inch, while the p-trap is 1 1/2 inch. When I went to Home Depot over the weekend, I asked a young man for help. I asked if he had some type of reducer so that I could make the pipes fit correctly. He was honest and tried very hard to find something that would work. Finally, he asked an older sales person. The older salesperson walked up to the wall and picked up a plastic washer. He told me that all I had to do was to switch washers when I was ready to connect the fixture and that it would make it water tight. After another trip to Home Depot, to buy extensions and after much contortions(have you tried to connect anything to a sink from the back and below in tight quarters?), I am finally done. One thing to check off my to do list and a few hundred left to go.