Little Maple’s Fate

I think I have decided to plant a native-species hedge along the western edge of the yard. At first, I wanted trees, but there are power and utility lines that run right along that line.

So today, I started pulling out English ivy, right in the midst of a sea of it. I don’t know that I will be able to plant anything there this winter, but this is a long project anyway. I worked from the utility pole to the little maple volunteer sapling. What a tangled matted mess!

(Any maple identification experts out there? Do you know what type of maple this is? I have a book and have been Googling – but I am not sure.)

As I worked, I wondered about that little maple.

  • It couldn’t stay where it was, directly beneath the power lines.
  • I really didn’t have anywhere to transplant it. There were some tiny spots of sun that I was hoping to use for persimmon trees and maybe a few more paw paws.
  • I wasn’t sure to whom I could give it away and wasn’t sure it would survive being dug up anyway.

It grieved me that I should lose this little tree, even though I had done nothing to care for it up until this point. It had beaten out the English ivy and every other competitor all on its own — which, in fact, endeared it to me all the more. (Which, in fact, may point to it being an invasive type?)

Then, I realized I was thinking in a binary: it either had to be transplanted to hopefully survive and grow into a large tree or it had to die outright. But, what if I just kept it pruned to a small tree and let it stay where it was?

Of course, this is not the life it was imagining for itself. It would not reach its full potential of majesty. But, perhaps it would still thrive, just on a smaller scale? Or, was I dooming it?

Speaking of doom, the squirrels uprooted and flipped the final woodland pinkroot. I am so sad. Perhaps the newly freed up patches from pulling ivy will distract them away as an easy acorn hiding spot and keep them from doing the same to my milkweed. The milkweed and pawpaws are not looking quite as glorious as when I panted them, but they are still alive. I am hoping it is just the stress of transplanting and cooler weather, although one of the milkweeds does have signs of squirrel digging about it.

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