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They still bloom spectacularly.

This is the third spring that I got picture of this pair of flowering cherry trees in bloom. I took several pictures last year, ranging from closeup pictures of the flowers, to pictures taken from a distance like the picture above. Fewer pictures were taken during the previous spring of 2018, before these trees were groomed of copious necrosis. Sadly, this picture will be one of the last.

The trees will be cut down this year. They stayed just long enough to bloom this one last season, but will not likely be here much longer. They are deteriorating at such a rate that if I were to prune the necrosis away after bloom, there would not be much remaining. The tree to the right in this picture would be only a rotten stump with a few limber twigs protruding from the top.

Structural integrity has been so compromised by decay that, even without the weight of all the limbs that have been pruned back during the past many years, the trunks could easily break off at the ground. When I remove them, I will likely just push the tree to the right over without cutting it first. If there were any branches left, a kid could knock it over by trying to climb it.

As much as I would prefer for these trees to last much longer, I want to install their replacements as soon as possible. Planting them this spring would give them all summer to disperse roots and grow a little bit before blooming next spring. I know they will not be much to look at for a few years, but many years from now, they might be as spectacular as these two originals were.

Regardless, it will be a saddening task to cut down these distinguished trees.

14 thoughts on “Grande Finale

    1. I have no problem cutting trees down. There are too many of them here, and they just keep making more where we can not let them stay. The difficulty with these two flowering cherries is that they are so famous and appreciated. No one remembers them not being here.

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    1. It would be easier to cut down a ‘Forest Pansy’ redbud because it would not have been here so long. They were popularized only in the early 1990s, and live only about twenty to thirty years here. They are expected to die young. Not many of those planted in the late 1990s remain. (Besides, I am none too keen on that cultivar.) I would have no problem cutting down an older tree, but these flowering cherries are appreciated by so many, and have been here longer than anyone can remember.

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      1. Ah, but this redbud is a memorial tree. So much goes into our affection for plants. Appreciate knowing this is a short-lived tree, though. It is already at least 15.

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      2. Oh, goodness! That is very different! I could not bear to remove that either. One of the memorial trees here is a weeping willow, which does not live much longer. I would have recommended something else, but the person for whom it is a memorial really liked weeping willows. In your region, Eastern redbuds likely live longer than they do in our chaparral or coastal climates. (Both climates are very different from each other, but redbuds dislike both.)

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      1. It is uncommon now. That is why they were not cut down two years ago. We could not find replacements. By the time we found a pair last year, we were too overwhelmed with other work to install new trees. I hope that we can still get them. If I had planned better, I would have grown copies from the original trees.

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    1. The trunks are so hollow that the worse of the two would fall over if the canopy tried to regenerate and got too heavy. The other article shows the cavity that seemed to explode from within. These trees have been incredibly loyal to their fans, and put on a fabulous show until the end.

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