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I know it's 'only a tree'...

(43 Posts)
vampirequeen Mon 10-Aug-15 09:35:28

... but it's special to me and today my landlord is hacking at it because the witch neighbour across the land has complained about it. Apparently she doesn't like looking at it.

Let me explain. Between my house and her house is a patch of wasteland. Some owned by my landlord and some owned by the council. Part of it gets used as a car park by the people who live in the street (me included) whilst the rest is left to nature. It's a wonderful piece of land split into two by the parking area. On the main area (landlords) there are a few full grown trees and several saplings, stacks of brambles and other wild plants. The local community bramble pick. It's lovely to see people bring their children and grandchildren and let's be honest fresh berries are so much nicer than shop bought. The land is also a haven for wildlife. Birds, squirrels, hedgehogs, foxes not forgetting the myriad of invertibrates and insects.

The small patch (council) wasn't doing so well so last year I cut back the brambles which has ceased to fruit because they were so mangled. I didn't kill them, just tidied them up. Of course the nettles took advantage of the cleared land but that wasn't a problem. After all, a lot of butterflies need nettles. Since then I and other people have scattered seeds or transplanted seedlings on the land. No's left to nature. If the seeds or seedling's grow then brilliant, if not then they weren't meant to be there. This summer we began to see the fruits of the seeding and planting. Not just in colour as plants flowered by in the influx of new wildlife. We no longer just have the insects that need nettles. This year I saw a peacock butterfly. Not exciting to many people but this is a newcomer. Who knows whether it's come by the effects of nature or the help we've given but either way it's there and where there's one there'll be more. We've also had green and brown tree bugs. Again nothing special but new to this area.

So why, if the area looks nicer, is my neighbour complaining. Well it has nothing to do with the tree. My landlord owns my house and the empty house next door which, for some reason, he hasn't got around to doing up. She loves to bad mouth him around the neighbourhood about this (he doesn't know). Recently he's started working on the house and this week he had insulation and rendering installed on the outside walls (the house is old and single brick). It looks brilliant and she's jealous because now our house and the empty house look nicer than hers so she's found something new to whinge about. My landlord is a nice man and wanted to keep the peace so he's chopped off the branches that overhang his land. He was going to chop more until he saw how upset I was.

I know it's daft but it's not just a tree it's my tree (OK not my tree) and a habitat for who knows what creatures.

MiniMouse Mon 10-Aug-15 09:52:53

I know exactly what you mean vq We have a near neighbour who's chopped down all their trees and I miss them SO much!! They were in their garden and perfectly entitled to do it, but the view from my bedroom window is now a fence and concrete rather than beautiful green-ness and birds sad The view from their own house must be pretty grim too confused

Luckygirl Mon 10-Aug-15 09:56:05

I get very upset when trees are cut down - I even have a 4 inch high oak in our lawn and there is a little stick next to it to stop it getting mown down - OH thinks I'm nuts!

Anniebach Mon 10-Aug-15 10:01:56

Not daft, I weep when a tree is cut down

merlotgran Mon 10-Aug-15 10:03:10

He's not cutting the whole tree down is he?

What kind of tree is it?

henetha Mon 10-Aug-15 10:05:05

Total sympathy, vampirequeen. Trees are wonderful. I dislike your neighbour very much.

soontobe Mon 10-Aug-15 10:08:58

Wont the branches being cut off make it stronger?

We cut some branches off our trees.
They are now stronger than ever.

soontobe Mon 10-Aug-15 10:10:58

Not nice though when it happens.

merlotgran Mon 10-Aug-15 10:18:01

I was heartbroken when all the trees on both sides of the side of the farm road were pollarded three years ago. DH had been responsible for a huge tree planting scheme back in the seventies to prevent the dust bowl effect of wind damage on the fens and we hated driving down a wide open space again instead of a leafy lane.

It did them the world of good. They are now growing straight and strong instead of leaning over and hitting the tops of tall farm vehicles which is the reason they were pollarded in the first place.

Indinana Mon 10-Aug-15 10:19:35

I understand exactly how you feel vq. Trees are beautiful and to destroy them or harm them just to appease some bitter woman who has taken a dislike to one is so wrong. I wish your landlord had stood up to her and refused to do as she wanted. Nasty woman, I hope you have the satisfaction of seeing the karma that she deserves.

vampirequeen Mon 10-Aug-15 10:24:34

It's only an ash. Nothing special but it's beautiful and it's doing no harm. After my landlord realised how upset I was he has only lopped off some branches. I know the tree will recover but it's the fact that she made such a fuss and had him attack the tree just because she felt that way inclined.

She's quite an unpleasant person who is well known in the community. I took her on once before when a homeless man was sleeping near some dustbins. He wasn't doing any harm and several of us were giving him food and hot drinks. If she'd bothered to talk to him she would have found he was a lovely man who's life had fallen apart. He had discovered that sheltering between the bins was slightly warmer than sleeping in the open but only intended to stay a short while because he knew he had to move on. He didn't make a mess. All his stuff was neatly packed in plastic bags which were hidden by the bins.

She called the police and told them he was taking drugs, leaving needles around and was a danger to the children who play on the land (no children play on the land because she won't let them). He wasn't but that didn't matter. The police came and moved him on. They were very nice to him and gave him advice on where he could camp without being moved on. DH explained how to make a shelter from a piece of plastic and the police officer said he thought he knew where he might find some. So in the end he was probably better off but that hadn't been her intention. She just didn't want him 'bringing down the neighbourhood'....her words not mine.

durhamjen Mon 10-Aug-15 10:54:07

What do you mean, it's only an ash?
With ash dieback, we need as many healthy ashes as we can. Look on the Woodland Trust website about it.
Tell your landlord how pleased you are that you have a healthy ash tree.

Indinana Mon 10-Aug-15 11:06:57

I love ash trees! (Good lord, I used to be one on here... grin)

merlotgran Mon 10-Aug-15 11:12:43

This is not a good time of the year to be lopping branches off healthy trees let alone vulnerable ones like ash. A tree is more open to viruses when branches have been hacked off.

If your neighbour persists you can contact your local council with regard to putting a tree preservation order in place.

durhamjen Mon 10-Aug-15 11:38:57

My grandson always calls Indiana Jones Indinana. He just cannot say Indiana.
I wondered what had happened to you. At least you have not named yourself Chalara.

Indinana Mon 10-Aug-15 11:57:58

grin durhamjen. No, not dying back, still alive and kicking (however feebly these days!)

thatbags Mon 10-Aug-15 16:12:40

Ash trees are weeds here, die-back or no (no evidence of the disease here yet, thankfully). Sorry, but my garden can't support an ash forest, which is what it would become if I didn't pull out a couple of dozen ash seedlings every year, along with several more dozen birches, sycamores, hollies, and even oaks and beeches.

vampirequeen Mon 10-Aug-15 16:27:01

I've just checked the local authority website. It would appear that my tree and all the bigger trees on the land are protected because it's in a conservation area. I'm going to email the local authority to double check but, if so, I don't think there is anything my neighbour can do about my tree.

Nonnie Mon 10-Aug-15 16:41:49

You have reminded me of one day when I was at work and DS called me to say there was a man at the door had come to cut down the enormous and beautiful tree just outside our house. I told him to stop him and if necessary tie himself to the tree. Apparently he had also gone to our neighbour and we both thought the other was responsible. It transpired that he was the local council's aboreologist who had been sent to check on the oak tree on the north side of the lane not the very different species (I've lost the right word for the species) on the south side. Very worrying!

vampirequeen Mon 10-Aug-15 16:47:09

I totally agree. You'd think an aboreologist would know his trees.

durhamjen Mon 10-Aug-15 16:47:18


durhamjen Mon 10-Aug-15 16:50:41

You are allowed to pull out seedlings, thatbags. I get quite a few sycamore in my garden, which I do not want.
Hopefully you will never get Chalara in your ash trees. If you did you would be grateful for the seedlings that Woodland Trust and others now grow, rather than import.

Bellanonna Mon 10-Aug-15 17:23:39

Pedunculate ? The other one is sessile. Also holm, looks like holly imo. In our nearby neighbouring road we have turkey oaks. An American import I believe. Very large leaves.

durhamjen Mon 10-Aug-15 17:28:56

That's the word, Bellanonna.
Turkey oaks, eh? Couldn't be happy with the English oak, had to import one.

Nandalot Mon 10-Aug-15 17:39:45

Well done for your research, Vampire Queen. If the trees are protected that will settle your neighbour's hash..just had a thought , ...but not your ash. grin Sorry about that couldn't resist.

Your green area sounds wonderful. What an amenity. Your neighbour must be a very miserable soul not to be able to appreciate it.