Above: redwood leaves and twigs are surprisingly tiny. Their numbers for any one gigantic tree, though, are ENORMOUS. So, if you've got nine mature specimens of sequoia sempervirens on half an acre (as we do here in the Fort), then spring leaves a gi-gundous amount of crap on the ground. Here, I've raked about 1/10 of them onto a plastic tarp so I could drag them easily (more or less) to the "staging area" by the back gate.
Actually, I was kind of hoping -- fantasizing, really -- that maybe I could hook Kelsey up by a harness to the tarp and have him drag it to the staging area... but he was busy guarding us all against rogue argon atoms hiding 'midst the nitrogen and oxygen. Or something like that.
A new discovery every spring is this patio (above). It's in the center of a ring of second-growth redwoods, and marks roughly the footprint of a many-centuries-old tree that was harvested about a hundred years ago. Coastal redwoods' roots shoot up "suckers", though, and this old one left a bevy of five suckers that are now mature. They drop gobs of stuff onto this patio every winter, and every spring we shovel it out to reclaim the area.
(The chicken in the above picture is "Specks," a remarkable chicken, sure to be the topic of a future post. She follows me everywhere I go in the yard, commenting and inspecting, and generally violating all of my pre-conceived notions about what chickens are supposed to be like.)
Above: the largest of the second-growth "sucker" trees around our rewood patio. I don't know how tall it is; maybe somebody with a protractor can figure it out.