Tree Cutting Adventures

Today, I’m heading down to New Orleans, along with part of my family, to spend Labor Day weekend with my niece, Lauren.  We are excited to see their new house and help her get some things done around there while we are there, like painting furniture and walls.  I’ll have lots of fun blog posts to share when I get back!  I’ll bet there will be baby and nursery talk this weekend too. 🙂

But today, since I share most everything that goes on around my house project-wise, I thought I’d share the latest with you. Last week I had 2 trees cut down in my front yard, so I documented it with pics.  I’m not a huge tree cutter and tend to want to hang onto my trees for the most part, but sometimes a tree can be dangerous and too close to the house and when that is the case, I’m not at all afraid to cut one down.  Such is the case with a huge pine tree that straddled the line with me and one of my neighbors.  I talked to my neighbor about cutting down the tree, but he didn’t want to share the costs.  I figured it wouldn’t hurt to ask, so I did.  He gave me his blessing on taking the tree down, although didn’t really see the need.  The tree was leaning towards my house and I have heard horror stories about big pines falling in storms, so I figured I’d better be safe and get it down.  It might have stayed up for 100 years, but I didn’t want to take a chance on it falling.  Plus, pine trees are so messy. I don’t love their pinecones falling in my front yard and the messy pine straw they leave behind.

So, goodbye big pine tree!

There was also another smaller cherry tree, one of 3 trees lined up across my front yard that also needed to go.  It had dead limbs on one side and was growing into my beautiful pink dogwood tree, so it was time for it to come down too.  I’m left with 2 pretty trees in the front yard, one pink cherry and one pink dogwood, so that’s a nice view for me.  I got a recommendation from one of my friends who used a local tree cutter and she put me in touch with them.   I was very satisfied with the estimate I got to take down both these trees:  $550 for both!

When you see the size of my pine tree, I think you’ll agree, this was a good price! That was a scary proposition to watch and I was a tree climber from way back, but you couldn’t pay me to do what this guy did.

3 trees

So, here’s what I started with.  3 trees lined up in my front yard. There’s a pink cherry on the right and a pink dogwood on the left, which is just gorgeous in Spring.  The pink cherry in the middle, however, has seen better days, with several dying limbs and it was growing into the side of my dogwood tree, so it was time to take ‘er down.

cherry and dogwood

Here’s a good angle so you can see how close it is to my beautiful dogwood.

cherry tree

Growing right into the side, I definitely didn’t want it impeding on my dogwood growth and health.

big pine
This monstrous pine sits right on the line with me and my neighbor.  It drops pinecones and pine straw and is not my favorite tree to have around.  I’ve heard they have shallow roots and can uproot during storms, so it made me nervous, looming over my house.

leaning pine

As you can see from this angle, it is definitely leaning towards my mansion. Smile  And we can’t have that!



023 (2)

This is a good shot of how big the tree is.  Not a small feat to get this sucker down.

cherry tree down

The crew of about 6 guys showed up to take my 2 trees down last Friday.  They were thorough and knew what they were doing and I was very happy with how they handled it all.  First, chainsaws took down all the limbs and they cut this cherry tree down to a stump.

cherry tree cut

Limb by limb and it was gone in just a few minutes.  They brought in a small bulldozer to move around the trunk of the big tree and a big truck and wood chipper to get rid of all this wood. I could have kept some wood chips, but told them to haul it all off, please.

cherry down

Cherry tree gone!

limbs chipped

Limbs and debris that got fed into the wood chipper.  They were here about 4 hours.


This big truck hauled off all the wood chips.

big pine (2)

Next, it was time for the big one. That big pine is no joke.  You can see those 2 guys and how small they look next to the tree.

climbing tree

The smaller guy took off up the tree with ropes and a gas powered chain saw.  He had spikes in his shoes to climb the tree.  As much as I loved climbing trees as a child, no way would I climb this thing.  You have to be young and agile to do this.  This guy knew just how to do it and I watched the whole process.

cut limbs

Limb by limb he started cutting them all off, working his way up the tree trunk.

cutting more limbs

Big limbs fell in the yard and the other guys drug them over and got them ready to go in the wood chipper.

limb debris

Limbs fell all over the place.

tree top
Before long, the bottom  limbs were all gone and the trunk was bare.  He inched his way to the top.

cutting trunk

Once all those bigger limbs were gone, then he picked a spot on the trunk which would take down the rest of the top of the tree.  This was pretty amazing!


Timberrrrr!!  Isn’t that what they yell when a tree comes down?

I did this in an animated gif program on Photoscape and got the whole top coming down.  Incredible, isn’t it?  Cutting both sides of the trunk with the chain saw, they had a rope tied to the top and 2 guys out in the road, insuring that it would fall where they wanted it to fall.

trunk left

Then, just the trunk was left.  I missed how they got this down since I was inside the house, but the huge thud and shaking of my house told me when the whole trunk came down.  I think they probably did the same method and cut it down at the bottom with the chainsaw, pulling it down where they wanted it.

trunk down

Once I heard the thud from inside, I went to the front door to see it laying on the ground, the massive stump left.

chipping wood

They then cut it all up and chipped it too.  Maybe I should have asked for a slice of wood, that might have been fun.  Oh well!

all clear

Once they were finished, my front yard looked like this.  They did a very thorough job of cleaning up and I was very pleased.

pine stump

All that is left of the pine tree now.  I may have someone come back and grind the stumps, but I won’t be in a hurry about that.  This company didn’t do that part.

my house exterior

The front of my house looks a little cleaner now with the broken down cherry tree gone. Now my beautiful dogwood can take off and spread out like it needs to.  I’ve got lots of big plans to landscape this house and I’m waiting for a guy that I know to come and build me a cute front porch and peaked roof with columns.  He’s really busy, but I’m hoping he will get to me in the next couple of months before it gets too cold.  I can’t wait to get that done too and it will add a lot of charm to the front of my house.

So, that’s the low down on taking down some trees!  Have you had to do that at your house too?

I’m glad I didn’t have tons of trees to  have to take down. Some of the houses we looked at before I got this one were full of awful pine trees close to the house and overgrown backyards. I’m so glad that I ended up with a yard that’s a blank slate and I don’t have to do a lot of tearing out.

Landscaping additions, yes please!


The Lutron giveaway is closed and the five winners have been announced and emailed!

- Rhoda


  1. I had 6 similar trees taken down for the same reason. After my husband passed away I realized I had no one to elbow in the night to say trees down, so when left up to me I took them out.

  2. Loved this post and your blog! Sincerely, a tall, Caucasian, American woman :). I’ve found the majority of people are very proud of their heritage and don’t mind being called by it. My two best friends are Korean and African American :).
    Anyway keep up the wonderful posts! I look forward to reading them every day.

  3. I loved hearing about your recent tree removal and gardening plans. My husband has recently found a love of felling (diseased) pine trees on our property in WV.

    FYI, I have been through 3 major hurricanes and numerous minor ones. What I have learned is that hardwood trees have shallow roots so they tumble over with the roots sticking up in the air, while pine trees have a very DEEP root systems that cause the soft wood to, well, snap like toothpicks. Both are very dangerous to a house and I have seen plenty where both kinds of trees have fallen on them. One particular house that I remember in NC was literally cut in half by a pine tree that fell on it.

  4. Greetings — I hope you don’t mind if I ‘pinned’ your tree coming down on one of my Pinterest boards. I want to show my son. I have a tree that needs to come down like this. Thanks for sharing.
    p.s. If you wish me to remove from Pinterest, I surely will. Please email me to let me know. Thanks!

  5. Rob Gillies says

    I too want to reinforce what the concerned insurance agent mentioned. I’m a ISA Certified arborist and am disappointed to see such a lack of professionalism. When it’s said that this is one of the most dangerous professions that means workers are killed and maimed weekly. Last year 81 workers died in the most horrific ways you could imagine. another 1000 were injured severely enough to have lost time at work. The majority of them were workers much like the people you have chosen. What you have inadvertently done is condone and promote unsafe work practices where the employer has shown a complete disregard for his workers and you his client. While the trees came down without incident, that’s of little consequence that this company will continue in this manner until something catastrophic happen.
    Am I being overly dramatic? No, take a look at that how easily those saws and wood chippers destroy those trees. Humans are no match for them.

    While it seems like a good deal, what you’ve traded for is their safety. Remember they are family men too.

    For you and your followers who need tree care try the ISA web site and select the link for find an arborist.

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