From Flora

Sacrificial Alder

Chitted gold potatoes in an egg cartonThis weekend we dropped a few 15 year old Red alder trees to increase sunlight for our first ever potato patch.

Piles of fresh cut Red alder branches with tree stumps in backgroundFelling a tree is bittersweet. I love these alders: they were our first source of shade in a mostly barren yard, and they attract all kinds of little birds. I also love the light that grows vegetables, and I could see the difference in moonlight the night after these alders came down. Fortunately we have several more alders growing 50 feet away, and new saplings sprout in flower beds every year.

We will be using these alder branches for compost, and the trunks will edge garden beds and paths. May our golden, red, and purple potatoes be plentiful so that the alders do not fall without good purpose.
Angular slices of red alderwood arranged on a porch

trees ripe with autumn

Get a healthy dose of tree-time with this month’s Festival of the Trees issue #65, now online at local ecologist courtesy of Dr. Georgia Silvera Seamans.

leafy rainbow

 

Behold, the colors of survival! This Japanese maple is making its best showing of fall colors in 10 years.

a small pirouette

This tree’s early life included the combined challenges of multiple transplantings, puppy root-chewing, a stint of neglect during the Pennsylvania years, and finally a major hack job following a strange infection. Much healthier now, this tree reveals this season’s wonderfully slow autumn in the Pacific Northwest.

there's no such thing as too much color