7/01/2007

The half-way point, Part 2.

Meanwhile, back home the neighbor has chosen the nuclear option. (Details.)

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The only trees left standing have been butchered.

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He even took down the wisteria.

Before:

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After:

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I'm not going to complain about this, but it means I have to redesign my garden for more sun. A lot more sun.

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Maple, salal, huckleberry, fern, ribes, fuchsia, bromeliad, clivia, huechera, tiarella, cineraria, asarum, and foxglove are all in play.

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But he's got to assess the damage his neglect has done to his house.

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And build a new deck.

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13 comments:

LostRoses said...

He'll probably install that black landscape plastic over the blasted ground now and call it good.

Nice view of the chimneys or whatever those are. Looks like you're going to have to cultivate a lot of tall greenery to block that view!

Annie in Austin said...

Wow, Chuck - it's pretty stark, but at least not so inviting for rats and pests.

Your neighbor's scorched-earth remedy for years of sloth really irks me - it's a national disease: All or Nothing/ Kill or Cure/ Black or White/ With me or Agin' me/ 'Get it Done' ... those attitudes just show ignorance and impatience as far as I'm concerned.

Sorry for the rant - back to your new view - can your roof even hold pots heavy enough for screening plants along the edge?

Annie at the Transplantable Rose

JvA said...

Our neighbors are so similar! Except at least yours hauled out his yard waste, whereas mine (well, his 52-year-old son, anyway) prefers to leave it there. The better to make kindling from, I guess.

A couple of visits ago, the son sawed down every tree in the yard, saying he'd come back at some point to pick up the debris.

He told us "the less work for me, the better." He said he's going to just come out a couple years and pour poison on the land.

Yesterday he just went around the front with a spray bottle of Round-Up.

Gross.

chuck b. said...

Hate to say it, but I believ a large part of what enables things like this to happen is the ready supply of Mexican day laborers down on Cesar Chavez Street. If he didn't have them to turn to, he'd have to hire professionals, or at least students.

Chances are good that it would be much harder to find someone who would trim a tree that badly, at any rate. You'd have to go out of your way, or do it yourself, which obviously was never going to thappen with this guy.

mmw said...

Naw, that's just a normal SF Deck.

mmw said...

And the problem is not "Mexican laborers", it's "poor people who will work hard and do whatever you tell them for a small amount of money." Same thing, just a matter of emphasis.

chuck b. said...

That's a fine re-emphasis, but if there were not Mexican day-laborers on Cesar Chavez (and how do I know they're Mexican?), where would one find poor people who will work hard and do whatever one tells them to do? I'm not necessarily saying it's a problem; I should hand out Spanish language tree-pruning brochures to day laborers.

lisa said...

Wow...kudos to you for NOT complaining, because I sure thought the wisteria looked better! Amazing how much crap those plants were hiding!

Matthew said...

Not to worry, that wisteria will be back soon.

Internet Ronin said...

I disagree, Chuck. Those who pay the bill, whether it is for cheap labor or expensive labor, call the shots. All of the plants would have been gone in any event. I've seen it many times before and think it pretty predictable under the circumstances. Someone like that wasn't going to take any chances.

BTW, how much does cheap Mexican labor go for in your area? I can't imagine it is any less than here in the Sierra foothills and that is running about $15 per hour minimum I hear.

chuck b. said...

The wisteria was nice except when it was attaching itself around my house. It looks nice in that picture because I am a pruning stud! I never really appreciated the wisteria until it was gone and I had to compare the before and after pictures. Typical!

IR-- I don't know how much cheap Mexican labor goes for in the City, but my strong hunch is that it's more than $15/hr. I would say it's a good $20. But I don't know.

Deviant Deziner said...

Chuck,
You think that you have it bad ? HA !
You should meet my dead beat neighbor "Jethroe".
Talk about a health and fire hazard - not only does he have old plastic kiddy swimming pools / er ummm mosquito incubators but buckets full of old motor oil and gas tanks throw across the yard and into his overgrown weedy tundra.

My neighborhood got the health inspector out here once and they issued a citation and Jethroe got a back hoe to clean out the debris but 6 months later it is rats , vermon and garbage again.

At least you have a proactive city that will actually take some action. The town that I live in is PATHETIC ! - Try to get the code compliance person in Novato to do anything is like getting George Bush to admit he is a bonafide idiot, -- it's never gonna happen .

I feel your pain.

Michelle

chuck b. said...

It does sound like you have it worse, Michelle! And I'll bet in Novato, his hazardous yard is much, much bigger than my neighbor's. Eeuucccch.

Where do these people come from, anyway?