Wednesday Vignette – bragging rights

Okay, I know it’s not very attractive to brag about one’s accomplishments, but right now I feel somewhat justified… I just finished removing a clump of exceptionally root bound bamboo from an 8′ stock tank. It took me long enough… Realized a couple of years ago that it no longer looked healthy, meant to take it out, and procrastinated. The following year, it looked far worse, but still, nothing happened. I put it off, because… well, what a bitch of a job it is. Last winter, I started hacking away at it, but it was heavy work with its rain-saturated soil. I even solicited a deal with a teenage son, who soon proved too feeble for the job. Finally this summer, I intentionally withheld the water, and the entire clump dried up and turned yellow. It was time.

Those in the know told me that I would need a reciprocating saw to get it out, and they were right. Many thoughts of gratitude go to my father-in-law who gave us a SawsAll. He would have been proud if he saw my stubborn determination… In addition to the right tools, I can also tell you that you need enough space around you to achieve some leverage as you pry those chunks out. Especially at the ends of the tank – the middle was far easier. Being a cramscaper in a tight spot, leveraging space is something I had in very limited amounts – in fact, it was the cause of almost as much foul language as the many hot days we’ve had. Most of my dusty interactions with the bamboo occurred either during the cooler hours of the mornings, or after the sun disappeared behind the trees. I’m sure my neighbors are sick of hearing me grunting and cursing over the noise of the power tool. In the end, I exerted both blood and sweat over this project, but no tears. Well maybe a few – out of sheer joy, when I finally managed to crank the last piece out. Incidentally, this is also when the blood happened, but at that point, I was too happy to care.

8' stock tank

An old, deteriorating reed panel which had separated the back of the tank from the chain link fence ended up as soil amendment. The fence posts got a paint job, and a fresh new panel will follow. Now what? After all that, this is where the fun starts. I’m almost giddy with anticipation! More to follow soon!

About annamadeit

I was born and raised in Sweden, By now, I have lived almost as long in the United States. The path I’ve taken has been long and varied, and has given me a philosophical approach to life. I may joke that I’m a sybarite, but the truth is, I find joy and luxury in life’s simple things as well. My outlook on life has roots in a culture rich in history and tradition, and I care a great deal about environmental stewardship. Aesthetically, while drawn to the visually clean, functional practicality and sustainable solutions that are the hallmarks of modern Scandinavia, I also have a deep appreciation for the raw, the weathered, and the worn - materials that tell a story. To me, contrast, counterpoint, and diversity are what makes life interesting and engaging. Color has always informed everything I do. I’m a functional tetrachromat, and a hopeless plantoholic. I was originally trained as an architect working mostly on interiors, but soon ventured outside - into garden design. It’s that contrast thing again… An interior adrift from its exterior, is like a yin without a yang. My firm conviction that everything is connected gets me in trouble time and time again. The world is a big place, and full of marvelous distractions, and offers plentiful opportunities for inquiry and exploration. I started writing to quell my constant queries, explore my discoveries, and nurture my curiosity. The Creative Flux was started in 2010, and became a catch-all for all kinds of intersecting interests. The start of Flutter & Hum at the end of 2013 marks my descent into plant nerd revelry. I occasionally contribute to other blogs, but those two are my main ones. For sure, topics are all over the map, but then again - so am I! Welcome to my blogs!
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18 Responses to Wednesday Vignette – bragging rights

  1. janesmudgeegarden says:

    Ah, the bliss of having a legitimate reason to go out and buy a new plant!

    • annamadeit says:

      Haha – I wish! I have tons of homeless plants sitting around, to choose from already, so no shopping necessary. It’s kind of fun – the options are very nearly limitless! I want to turn at least part of the tank into a bog.

  2. linda says:

    Excellent , Anna ! You have bragging rights for sure .

  3. Alison says:

    Well, that is worth bragging about. I have a black bamboo in a stock tank that I also want to remove. In fact, I want to completely move the stock tank to another area of the garden, but that won’t happen unless it’s empty of soil as well as plants.

  4. Kris P says:

    Achievements like that MUST be celebrated! Congrats!

  5. Congratulations! What a job. I’m calling you for pointers if we ever reach the point we’re ready to do this. Guess how many tanks of bamboo we have? Five! Hahahaha…

    No WV from me today, instead I’m chronicling my flowers for Bloomday.

  6. Brag away. I once spent three months of weekends getting the stuff out of my sister’s garden

  7. Alan Lorence says:

    You’re hired! (I’ve got plenty of this sort of thing going on in my garden)

    • annamadeit says:

      Thanks, Alan! I’m really proud of myself, but readily admit I would not have been able to do it without my new best friend – the reciprocating saw. You should see the tank now – I’m turning part of it into a bog. Not quite photo ready yet, but soon…

  8. tonytomeo says:

    Bamboo is EVIL! However, physiologically, it is more predictable than most realize. Although very tough, only the rhizomes must be removed. It can not regenerate from roots. I know it sounds silly, but you would not believe how many believe that all the roots must be removed too!

    • annamadeit says:

      Yes! I was thrilled to learn this! Removing it was still one helluva chore, but being able to leave all that good, future compost made it a lot easier. All of the rhizomes were in the top foot, or so, of soil – a bit of knowledge that also encouraged me. 🙂

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