Arboretum Update 2023

Today I’m going to do an update on the arboretum. If you haven’t heard about this before, this is my passion project. I have a collection of different species of trees, and I thought it would be cool to see how these trees look when they’re not sliced up. 

So this little pasture is a few acres that I keep this collection on. Of course this is a lifelong project, but every year I like to give up an update to see how things are going in the arboretum. 

First up is the most important tree to me, because it has some sentimental value. This is the walnut tree that I moved from our old house. I collected it when it was a sapling on the day we closed and sold that house. It has been doing pretty well here on the new property, and it popped out the top of the tube towards the end of the season last year. I stuck another shorter tube on top of there, and I’m guessing it’ll get to the top of this tube as well. That’ll put it at about six and a half feet tall, and then the tubes can probably come off. 

This year, I have these four trees to plant, which are from Greg over in Pennsylvania. They are a couple of sycamores and a couple of Osage orange. I’ll get these in the ground, get them in the tubes, and hopefully they’ll survive the winter.

We have a horseshoe ridge that I will plant these on in the hopes that the cold air will settle in the valley beneath the ridge. I don’t know if that will make much of a difference, but I feel like that’s doing the best I can with the climate that we have. The one I’m planting here is one of the Osage orange trees, and it has some spikes on it, which makes getting it in the tube kind of hard. I’ve had some questions about the grow tubes in the past, and there’s a couple reasons to use them. One of the biggest reasons is that it protects the trees from wildlife, so I don’t have to worry about deer coming by and grazing my trees. But the tubes also directs a tree to grow straight up because it’s looking for that little bit of sun at the top of the tube. That should result in straighter growth instead of branching out low. The tubes also act like little greenhouses and help protect the trees from wind and extreme sun and things like that. 

The sycamore tree has some of the oddest looking leaves I’ve ever seen, but it’s a cool tree. The other sycamore hasn’t leafed yet, so I’m not sure if that one hasn’t made it or if it’s just slow to leaf. Who knows with trees. 

Now let’s check in with some of the other trees that I planted a while ago. This is a maple tree, and it’s really exploding. I’ll have to put another grow tube on it. 

Down here is a cherry tree, and it’s also coming up pretty quickly. 

Here is the hard maple that I planted last season. It’s starting to come up, and it’s getting pretty big, so this one is going to make it. Next year I’ll come by and clear the grass out of the area. Some of the others that I planted last year are not going to make it, because my arboretum caretaking kind of fell to the wayside with other projects I had going on. 

In the southeast corner of the lot I have some bur oaks, which are also exploding with growth. This is their second season in the tubes, and this one has already come up a pretty good amount this season. It’s cool to see how quickly these trees grow when you get these grow tubes on them. 

So that is where the arboretum is this year, and I’m guessing that the next couple of years will be kind of the same. I probably won’t have a whole lot of time and energy to focus on it, but if I get a few trees planted each year eventually there will be hundreds of trees. So thank you as always for joining. I greatly appreciate it. If you have any questions or comments on the arboretum, anything back in the shop, or whatever, please feel free to leave your comments. As always, I’ll be happy to answer any questions you might have. Until next time, happy woodworking.

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