I discovered #ThursdayTreeLove when Chandra’s post led me to it. See below for a link to the Thursday Tree Love host.
It was a hard decision I didn’t want to make and still don’t want to think about, but the revelation it brought is important. My husband told me the mimosa next to the house had to come down so they could add the rain gutters. Water damage is what led to the major renovations that have had us living in my parents’ old house since September. We could almost buy a new house with the money we’re spending on repairs. As the overhang on our house is practically non-existent, rain gutters are needed. It’s been so long, at least 25 years, that I don’t remember if that mimosa sprouted there on it’s own or if I transplanted it from a more obviously wrong spot. It took root at least a foot, maybe two, from the corner of the house. Now I know that is too close. It’s a hard lesson.
As you might know, my love for trees is powerful. I have a particular fondness for the misunderstood mimosa. When David and I reconnected in 2011, I didn’t know that he would become my husband, but one of the first things I told him was that I was a tree-hugger. He said he was too. That was good to hear, though I doubted that he could have the depth of tree love that I did.
After David told me the mimosa next to the house had to go, I asked him if we could just trim some of the branches. He said no because the tree really was right next to the house. I knew that. The main trunk had grown to be just a few inches from the house, touching the house when the wind blows hard, and major branches draped over the roof in the summertime. I asked David to take care of it and said that I don’t want to be there. I don’t want to see any remains. It’s too painful for me. We’re staying an hour away, and David commutes almost daily, so he would have plenty of opportunity to do it.
A few days later, David came “home” after working in the yard at our more permanent address. He said he took down the mimosa. He told me he said a prayer for it first. He got choked up talking about it. There were tears in his eyes. David’s feelings for this tree shocked me. I knew he cared, but he does not show emotion easily, though has shown it in grieving for dogs. David is strong and very practical, almost Vulcan-like at times which can be irritating but is more often comforting in it’s steadiness.
I knew David told me he was a “tree-hugger” back when we reconnected, but I didn’t know he could feel this depth of emotion for a tree. I didn’t know it would be hard for him. I didn’t ask him to say a prayer – that was all his idea. I just asked him to take care of it, and he did. I thanked him for caring so much and gave him a big hug. The gift in the sadness is that I have a new appreciation for the depth of my husband’s compassion. A person can have a big heart even if he doesn’t wear it on his sleeve.
David makes things from reclaimed wood, fallen trees, or trees that have to be cut down. He said the wood from the mimosa is a beautiful and pink. He hopes to make many beautiful things from it in his wood shop. I hope some day I can bear to look at them.
More mimosas live my backyard, thankfully not close to the house. I call them prolific rather than invasive, and have given a few away. I’m sure some of them came from the mimosa that took root too close to the house all those years ago.
Thursday Tree love is a photo feature on Happiness and Food, hosted on 2nd and 4th Thursday of each month. The next edition will be live on February 14, 2019. If you would like to play along, post a picture of a tree on your blog and link it back to the post on happiness and food: https://www.happinessandfood.com/thursdaytreelove-56/
January 24, 2019 at 12:33 pm
The mimosa flowers sparkle!
January 24, 2019 at 1:07 pm
Aren’t they amazing!
January 24, 2019 at 12:48 pm
Beautiful post about love for trees and for a guy who is such a support.
I am the same as you, I say good bye and go away if a tree has to come down.
Sometimes it can become a matter of the house or the tree …..
January 24, 2019 at 1:08 pm
Thank you for that sweet support, Miriam. The mimosa flowers smell wonderful too!
January 24, 2019 at 1:00 pm
I remember mimosas from visiting our relatives in Virginia. I don’t think they are hardy enough to survive up here, but I did like them.
We we bought our house, there were several trees that had been planted as shrubs and were so close to the house as to be denting the gutters. They all had to come down. It was sad, but there was no alternative.
January 24, 2019 at 1:11 pm
Thank you for your understanding. Many people around here seem to detest mimosas and say they are invasive. To me they are beautiful and the flowers have a delightful scent.
January 24, 2019 at 4:09 pm
I don’t think I’ve ever seen the flower. My dad tried to grow some in western PA. He was able to get a magnolia to grow but the mimosas always died.
January 24, 2019 at 5:08 pm
They do well here. Magnolia flowers smell good too. Lemony.
January 24, 2019 at 1:41 pm
JoAnna, I’m saddened to hear that you had to lose your mimosa tree. Consider planting another tree, in a much better location this time.
January 24, 2019 at 5:06 pm
Thank you, Rosaliene. I’m almost out of room in my yard, but will look around when I get back.
January 24, 2019 at 3:03 pm
Lovely story. So happy you have David, he sounds awesome. Mimosas are beautiful trees. Big hugs to you.
January 24, 2019 at 5:07 pm
Thanks, Deborah. I have a lot to be grateful for.
January 24, 2019 at 8:13 pm
I’m so sorry about your mimosa. I love seeing those pink feather-like blossoms all summer long around here. I’m happy you’ve joined #ThursdayTreeLove–a small, but wonderful, tree-loving, blogging community.
January 24, 2019 at 8:35 pm
Thank you, Chandra. I’m happy to be part of a tree-loving community!
January 24, 2019 at 9:06 pm
January 25, 2019 at 1:29 pm
January 24, 2019 at 9:48 pm
Beautiful post, thank you fore sharing with others!
January 25, 2019 at 1:29 pm
Thank you, Wilson.
January 27, 2019 at 11:00 pm
January 25, 2019 at 1:18 am
their beauty 🙂
January 25, 2019 at 1:37 pm
Thank you, David. That is one marvelous thing about trees, how they continue to sprout and grow. We are so blessed to share this planet with them.
January 25, 2019 at 2:54 am
Your post clearly reveals your love for trees.. Its indeed sad to cut down a tree but then sometimes we really dont have a choice. Your tree will still be with you but in a different form … That’s such a great thing…
January 25, 2019 at 1:38 pm
Thank you so much for this perspective. I will hold it in my heart.
January 27, 2019 at 6:53 pm
Aw. End of an era. I hope you plant something small and sweet there in memory of the mimosa. May help the ground heal as much as the two of you. New starts and all. ❤
January 27, 2019 at 8:36 pm
Thank you for understanding. I knew you would. Small and sweet is a good idea. Not much sun there until the late afternoon. Maybe a hosta or elephant ears.
January 28, 2019 at 6:38 pm
OH elephant ears — do those! For me! lol We have to dig them up before the freeze here, and they’re so lovely, but I forget and ugh.
January 29, 2019 at 12:34 am
You got it!
January 29, 2019 at 5:46 pm
😀 😀 😀
January 30, 2019 at 8:45 am
Beautiful trees and very hard to find one in a nursery in Georgia to one to plant.
January 30, 2019 at 12:11 pm
They grow “wild” here in NC. Maybe you will find a little seedling growing somewhere that it’s not wanted and give it a home. Thank you for appreciating the mimosas. Best wishes!
February 13, 2019 at 12:44 pm
What a heartfelt post but you know what shines through the story? David and your love for the trees. I loved those flowers and how beautiful they looked. Thanks for choosing to share with us. Welcome to Thursday Tree Love. Nice to meet you, JoAnna.
February 13, 2019 at 6:43 pm
Thank you, Parul. This means a lot. Nice to meet you, too.
February 13, 2019 at 6:10 pm
What a story. I also love mimosas. and their pink flowers. I never knew their wood was pink. Making objects with its wood will honor the life of that tree.
February 13, 2019 at 9:36 pm
Thank you, Alana. I appreciate your understanding. I saw the wood a couple days ago in David’s workshop. It didn’t look that pink to me, but it had dried out some. Maybe it had a pink tint.
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