Thursday, June 26, 2008

Scream-Inducing Garden Event

I knew it was too good to be true. All this week I had been marvelling at my backyard serviceberry tree. I planted it last summer. It produced a handful or two of berries, most of them quickly devoured by racoons, squirrels and birds. Oh well, I thought, next year will be better. Sure enough, this year the serviceberry branches are just dripping with berries. I spent many a minute standing before the berry-laden branches, picking one here and one there and basking in the glow of success.

So perhaps I jinxed myself by sharing this great garden news with a fellow green-thumb. "I have been having such luck with my serviceberry" I said to my colleague. "Last year, the raccoons picked it clean. This year, the berries haven't been touched." Even as I was saying the words, I wanted to take them back. They seem like an invitation to disaster. So you can imagine my horror when I stepped out into the backyard to find this.

My tree had been decapitated! Something had snapped the main horizontal branch and a side branch right off. (I imagined a big fat raccoon leaping from the top of the fence to land on the top branch.) There was a scream when I saw the damage, not a very loud one mind you, but a sad, defeated scream. It was followed by several minutes of angry mutterings peppered with profanity.

Shifting into damage control mode was the only option lest I sink into a pit of all-consuming bitterness and rage. I cut back the damaged branches and then summoned the family to the back deck telling them to start picking. Something's after our berries, I declared. The best revenge was to get to the berries before the critters did. And what a tasty revenge it was.


Gardenista said...

Arghh. This happened to one of my lovely orchids - though under the weight of its own flowers!

Poor serviceberry. Hopefully it will delight you with new branches for next year.

jodi said...

Oh, I'm so sorry, Irena. I hate raccoons! Hopefully the tree will recuperate. They're pretty sturdy.

Connie said...

What a disappointment! Glad you were able to get a few berries off it. The deer grazed on my 2 new cherry trees this year and that made me almost cry. We now have wire cages around them.

Gardenista said...

Hello! I tagged you on my blog today. Don't feel compelled to follow the rules and pass it on if you don't want to though. I wish you happy gardening this summer! Happy Canada day!