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Report From PIA – February 23

Gardeners soon learn that they need to be able to say, “No, you can’t grow here.” Some plants self-seed prolifically, for example, or wild trees, shrubs and weeds are oh-so-willing to sprout throughout the garden. We need to be able to pull most of them out.

I have watched a young white pine growing too close to a small oak ever since we moved to Poison Ivy Acres two years ago. I’ve known from the start that that there is no way those trees could continue to grow so close to each other in this location.

Sometimes we become aware of habits, commitments, or even people who are also growing in the wrong place. We may even have been nurturing them for years, but finally realize that we don’t want to support or ignore them any longer.

Wise cultivation means looking critically at what we are raising, and being willing to change directions at any given point. Today, I finally said that the white pine had to go. “Thanks for your willingness to be here,” I told it, “but this just isn’t the right place for you.”

We need to be good editors, in our landscapes and lives. Just because something has taken root, doesn’t mean it should be allowed to stay forever.

This side garden is nice when the sun streams through fall foliage, but I see a plant that is just in the wrong location.

The arrow on the left points to the white pine that I removed yesterday. The arrow on the right points to the tall stump of a dead pitch pine that my husband had the tree company leave when they took the top down. I've tried for the past year to think of a way to make this stump look good in that location. Bird houses? Sculptures on top? Nothing seems right. As of today I've admitted that is has to go.

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