Sunday, September 18, 2011

Chainsaw action

Today was great, made some big progress in a couple of areas and dropped some problem trees which were a bit close to the road for my liking.  This chainsaw, it just powers through all this soft timber!  A number of burning piles have been renewed and stacked high, and know that Sue will have a ball burning them away! Which she did (below)...

The first area of dramatic improvement is right at the driveway (above).  I raked up all the weeds and blackberry that were choking the creek (on the road side of the creek) and must say the place is looking a bit raw and exposed.  Still, it was all necessary and I hear from a great authority that now that the ground is clear again, the dormant native seeds will now take this opportunity to renew their bid for supremacy of the creek. Now to see what emerges!

The next area needing attention was the other side of the driveway, which was too hard to get to following all the rain we have had lately.  The main tree problem here or was is hawthorn.  For the record, this is a horrible tree to work with.  Spiky, tangled, whippy and generally uncooperative.  I will be very glad to get this lot burned away!  Building this pile opened up my arms countless times and defied my thick leather gloves too.  The first pic below is deceptive, the pile is at least 2 metres tall.

This is one of the trickier trees to drop and involved a bit of clever roping off, which worked a treat.  And of course when I cut it all up I got shredded.  Payback, I suppose...

Tuesday, September 13, 2011

Steady progress!

Thanks to the flu I was taken out of commission for a couple of weeks, missing 2 weeks of the most glorious weather and returned to the real world of winter all over again.  It even hailed one day!  My poor little seedlings at home are very confused... On the other hand, this is perfect bonfire weather, everything is wet or damp.  Once you get the fire going, you can pretty much burn anything.  Not surprisingly, blackberry bushes burn nicely, and the weed trees, particularly willow, burn hot and fast.

Last week was my first visit in three weeks, and made up for it with some more blackberry clearing and tree felling.  Tree felling is very fun and blackberries bite.  My forearms are like pincushions!  Despite the hazards, it goes without saying that each bit of reclaimed land brings enormous satisfaction.  Sue and I have a perfect arrangement now, I build the bonfire piles and she burns them at her leisure.  Tending the fires is a surprisingly time consuming activity and it is staggering how much material can be cleared away in a few hours.   I am more than happy to do the burn pile building...