Is this the most exciting thing this tree has ever experienced?
Some time ago a friend had offered to let me have a Japanese maple planted at his partner's house. His partner's family was going t be re-doing the landscaping and did not want to keep the tree. He offered that if I took the time to dig it up I could have the tree. Even with my very busy schedule I couldn't say no. As fortune would have it, the freezing levels went way up this weekend and the prospects for skiing didn't look very good. What a perfect day to transplant a tree! When Anne and I arrived the tree was much nicer than even I had imagined, a gorgeous laceleaf Japanese maple (Acer palmatum). Luckily we had brought lots of tools for removing it, these trees grow deep thick root systems, much more substantial than you would expect with their small stature. With the help of several shovels, a sawzall, and after about an hour of digging we had the mighty little tree out.
The tree then made the exciting journey from west seattle to Conservation Tree Care world headquarters in Skyway. The tree now fills the central role anchoring the appearance of the house. It is the perfect size and tree type for its space. It should require very little recurring maintenance as we were careful to plant it far enough from the building to avoid conflict.
I think this story highlights the fact that sometimes we need to look beyond the impulse to just cut down a tree that is no longer working in its space. Not every tree or tree species is appropriate for transplanting but sometimes everything works out and a tree can be moved. Now it's time to water our new friend and hope it takes well to its new environment after the stress of a big move.