Cracking the problem of removing a dead almond tree

When do you give up on an old Mallorcan almond tree? We have a few on our finca and they’re past their prime. In spite of that, they are covered in beautiful blossom in the early weeks of each year and offer a reasonable crop of almonds in the autumn. They may be old, but we love them, so they can live out their years in rural Mallorca without fear of a chainsaw massacre.

Mallorcan almond blossom

Blooming lovely!

Sadly, two of our old almond trees were badly damaged in September 2014, when a mini-tornado cut a swathe right through our field. We removed the broken branches then and left the trunks in the hope that there would be some regrowth.

Three years on there was no sign of any life remaining in these two trees. One is set within a stone wall, so must stay (or the wall will tumble down). The other has stood in the middle of the field looking rather forlorn – but removing it would require more than a bit of brute human force. We were pondering this very challenge just the other day, having coffee in the field, while The Boss supervised yet another bonfire. (Fire. It’s a man thing).

I’ll say this for The Boss: he gets things done. I was sitting writing at my computer – my back to the French doors facing the field – when I heard a loud unfamiliar noise. I turned around and our neighbour Lorenzo was in the field on his tractor, pushing the old tree trunk over. He’d been trundling up the lane and stopped for a chat; The Boss asked if he’d be able to pop in sometime to remove the tree (we’ve paid him to do tractor-related jobs before) and Lorenzo said he’d do it there and then. It took just moments to do.Almond tree felled

Down…and destined for the log store

Fungi on an old tree

The tree was dead but the fungus wasn’t!

It is a truth universally acknowledged that any man in possession of a large field must be in want of a tractor – or a kindly neighbour with one. Thanks, Lorenzo (and Jane Austen).

©Jan Edwards 2017

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4 thoughts on “Cracking the problem of removing a dead almond tree

  1. This underlines my motto “Every man needs a tractor”. Luckily I have two, a small one here on Mallorca and a slightly bigger back in Sweden. I would have liked more but my late wife laid down the rules : only one tractor at the time at each place. I could live with that. I have had great use for my tractors but they are also, like classic cars, nice to talk about with likeminded friends (mostly boys of different ages). You can also maintain, polish and pat them! I think you should encourage the Boss to acquire one!
    Anders (the tractorholic)

    • Oh how funny, Anders! Two tractors! I’d love The Boss to have a tractor as I think he’d have a great time pottering around the field. Cheaper than a classic car too! I have suggested it but he hasn’t yet taken up the suggestion. Our Swiss neighbour (who comes over for a few weeks at a time during the year) has bought one and he seems to be out on it very soon after he arrives! I’ll keep trying…

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