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My poor neighbor, whose window we broke, who’s never raised boys, who is having trouble with the fact that all of our houses are separated by about three feet just disqualifying us from apartment building status, came to me last week about trimming Herb, our camphor tree.  You know the old rule: It’s your responsibility to cut any part of your neighbor’s tree that is growing over your property?  Well, Herb and his glorious but invasive canopy, has invaded too far beyond his bounds, and two of our neighbors were going to take drastic measures.  Thankfully they let me know before firing up the chainsaws, and took my recommendation on an arborist; the same guy that did our tree in the front yard.  He did such an awesome job on our gangly-adolescent-boy of a laurel oak tree; I really didn’t think it was possible for that tree to be beautiful, but I was proved otherwise!

So my two neighbors and I went in the cost of butchering my lovely Herb, but at least he is symmetrical and still standing—most Florida nature purists would sneak in, cut him down and haul him away under the cover of darkness if they could get away with it—“The cinnamon camphor doesn’t belong here, and it’s prolific, invasive nature is snuffing out the natural ecosystem of Florida!  The berries and bark are poisonous to certain animals, to boot!  Damn Asia and their weird, beautiful, killer trees!”  I have a theory about this “evolution.”  I don’t think that the eastern hemisphere and the western hemisphere we ever supposed to have their gates open for travel—same goes for the southern and northern hemisphere.  If you were born in Greenland, you were never intended to go to Australia or vice versa, because you may bring something that would change the whole landscape of that part of the world—and the earth couldn’t handle that!  Never change, and never travel to new lands…ever!  Well, it appears that nobody listened, and now we are going all over the globe spreading our insidious seeds!  Thus, I have a lovely camphor that is supposedly causing harm to everything in a 30 mile radius—maybe that’s why my floratam sod is such a pain to keep healthy—oh wait, I think that is some manufactured, thirsty hybrid, too.

None-the-less, the arborist shaped the tree beautifully and I am sure our dwellings are all much safer for this hurricane season, but Herb looks pretty thin and lean.  Oh well, he’s invasive…he’ll probably need trimming again tomorrow.

My neighbor came home and immediately called me this afternoon.  She said that although she thought the tree guy did a good job, he cut a lot more of the tree than she expected.  I wasn’t really sure where she was going with this, frankly, I thought she’d be thrilled, but after we chatted a little longer, I realized that she was feeling me out expecting me to be mad.  I laughingly asked her “Are you trying to apologize for the tree?  Did you think you would come home to me sobbing in the backyard?”  She really was concerned that would be the case. I know she doesn’t want to have bad relations with us, so I’m sure she was relieved when I told her the tree was fine and that it would fill out probably faster than we would like.

Before and After!

Herb before

Herb before

Herb after...  :/

Herb after… :/