White Spruce Seedling

Of Old Spruces
We lost an old friend this week. A large spruce tree growing on our property had become too much of a risk, leaning as it was precipitously to the northeast in Norma’s flower garden.
When we bought our property here on the shore almost 17 years ago, there was one large spruce tree standing in what otherwise was a series of fields. My ancestors had cleared the property for farming and except for one small woodlot along the very shore of the pond (and next to the cemetery) there really weren’t many trees on our lands. So, when we built the house, our builder and architect had quite the discussion about whether that tree should stay or not. The builder wanted to take it down to make the driveway more circular, but our architect prevailed, to our pleasure as well, and the tree stayed. Norma used the area around the base of the tree and to its north for her flower garden, and I added in a few veggies here and there.
I’ve got images of the tree when we first moved in, and in those days, I used to decorate it for Christmas with lights I could put on it by standing on the stone wall behind it. The tree these days was so tall, I couldn’t have even thrown a set of lights over the top of it! We guess it had probably tripled in size since the house was built. The lean, though, was a problem, as if it fell in that direction, the entire garden and all the stone walls would be in peril.
The tree, had to be at least 70 years old, as we have pictures in the 1950’s of this place and the barn where the tree stood is gone and there is growth in the “hole” even in those images. With the prevailing winds here from the South-West the tree had developed quite a lean to the North-East, and Dorian last fall pushed it even further – and also took out some of the poplars standing nearby. Sadly, we decided the old spruce had to come down.
This week, a property management company came and took the spruce and the poplars, managing to make the spruce fall just where they wanted missing the stone walls and the flowers. Experts in what they do. They even cleaned up afterward.
The next day, we were at a nursery with Norma looking for soil and plants for her garden, and I spotted some tree seedlings outside the greenhouse. There were some nice looking probably 3 year old white spruce trees, selling for a reasonable price. I bought two. They are in the garden now above where the old spruce stood. Small, but pretty, as you can see. In the years to come, I’ll be interested to see what they come out looking like. After all, as Caecilius Statius, (220-168 B.C) said -
“We plant trees not for ourselves, but for the future generations.”