jungle job

Had another big job in the jungle. It wasn’t planned to be a big job but like they always do, it turned out to be 10x what I had expected. We have a variety of tree here in Florida called Golden Rain. They’re called Golden Rain because when they bloom the tree is full of brilliant, yellow blossoms. The blossoms then turn into even showier pinkish seed pods. The pods almost look like pink parchment lanterns and the entire tree makes the transition from yellow to pink. The process lasts for months so people really love the trees. I loved them too until I learned, years ago, that those seed pods turn into new trees that spring up a year or two later all over the place. My neighbor George had a couple that he had planted years ago and cut down a few years back. But not before there were literally hundreds of baby trees popping up all over. When that happens in the lawn or a clear area, no problem you just mow them down. But when the seeds germinate in jungle area, you never know they’re there until they get tall enough to show above the floor jungle. If you cut them down and don’t pull out the roots, in a couple of years they pop back up with even deeper roots. We had a dozen or so that had grown as tall as 10′ with 2” trunks and were approaching the age of reproduction. They were deep in the jungle so getting to them was tough slogging. George and I had yanking these bad boys out on our to-do list for the last 6 months and we finally decided to pull the trigger. We were able to yank out quite a few small ones by hand but the remaining big boys need mechanical help. That means using the golf cart in tractor pull mode. The methodology is to crawl under the brush and tie one end of a strong rope to the base of the tree and the other to the golf cart. Then yank. Sounds easy enough but some of these guys had grown up weaving themselves in the wire fence between our property which meant literally cutting the fence strand by strand inside the dense jungle. Others had sprouted in small openings between palmetto palms so the roots were intertwined with monster palm roots. Four hours later we yanked the last one free. We were both beat to a frazzle, totally covered with dirt, and drenched in sweat. Nothing is ever easy.

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