My first job was to trim the branches of this monster so they did not rub on the edge of the house roof. With one inch long thorny spikes, it was definitely going to do some damage.
Not to worry about a ladder, this tree is on the side of a hill, allowing me access to the lower branches. I cut a few, but of course couldn't reach the tentacle doing the damage. My solution was simple. I have a seven foot long awning hook for my rig. I'll just hook the branch, pull it down and CUT.
Although I could have used two more hands, the first two cuts went okay. On the third and biggest randy branch, it slipped out of the hook and slapped me in the face. Well you dirty rat!! I hooked the branch again, pulled with all my might and squeezed the end between my legs while I used both hands and two foot long pruning shears to lop off the end. Don't laugh!!
EUREKA! It worked ... that is until I let loose of my hold on the hook. When the rest of the branch flew back towards the tree, the hook went along for the ride with a loud TWANG!! Thankful I didn't get slapped in the face again, I gathered my wits and went looking for the hook, which I was sure was on the ground. Except I couldn't find it.
Where in the world?? Yes, that's it. Clear up in the very top of the tree where I couldn't reach it even if I WAS on a ladder. Oh good grief ... NOW what do I do? I wandered through the garage looking for something long enough to reach. AHA ... my trusty RAKE!!
After several tries, jumping up and flailing around like a crazy lady, I finally got the hook loose and safely stowed back in the rig. That was enough limb trimming for me for the day. I think I better hire some professionals.
That's when I noticed as I walked, that something was coming along for the ride. A huge piece of branch was attached to the bottom of my moccasins. Those crazy spines. I took it off, only to find I actually could NOT pull it out by hand. Pliers were required.
That spine was so long I can't believe it didn't go right into my foot. It took all my strength to get it out. Next time I'm wearing BOOTS!!
While in the garage looking for solutions, I remembered some inside garage door panels were missing and some were falling out. Thirty minutes later I had them all replaced and didn't even need the gorilla tape I bought just for that purpose. STAY panels .... stay.
There must be a ghost in the garage with me because there was only one person standing there when I took this picture. The one on the right looks like she's holding her head, so I'm SURE that one is me.
Okay ... that's enough work for one day. Time to relax on the patio, maybe do a little sewing and play with the puppies.