Mar 3, 2012

Death of the Tigergrass plant

Yesterday was even more yard work. What can I say? I love it. I took a trip to Home Depot to pick up a nice 21" bow saw for a few limbs that were too big for the tree trimmer and a machete for the giant Tigergrass plant in the front yard. That tigergrass plant is a pain in the ass. It blows all over the yard and isn't even that pretty looking. Sorry Tigergrass plant; I hate you. I zipped a few dead limbs off the cherry tree in the back yard with the new saw (bow saws are awesome) which involved climbing (awesome) and hanging precariously with one arm (kind of awesome) while sawing overhead and loading my eyeballs with bark & saw dust (not really awesome). Nevertheless, limbs fell and the work was fun and easy. I then set to work on that Tigergrass plant; that SOB.

Above left: The Tigergrass plant. Above right: The crater which was once the Tigergrass plant.
My plan was to head out there and whack it down with the machete. I was stoked and was looking forward to going Samurai on it's ass though my plans were spoiled when the first several swipes glanced off it's resistant tubular reeds. Damn. So then I grabbed a bundle of the reeds and bent them over to the ground, stepping on them to keep them down, ignoring their cries for mercy as I brought down blow after blow with my new steel. Still, the machete just wasn't cutting the mustard so I bailed on it completely. I then just broke the reeds by hand until I was left with a 2' tall, 3' diameter, porcupine-looking mound. I had to bring in the big guns. Enter my splitting axe and pick axe. These were the way to go. Swinging sideways at the base of the monster I could feel an entirely new set of muscles getting sore. Still, the axe would sink deep into the roots and I'd have to wiggle it loose with both hands. The next forty minutes consisted of alternating between the splitting axe and standing on top of the clump bringing the pick axe down over and over and over complete with maniacal laughter and crazed expression. In the end, my final and most effective method involved dicing the top of the clump with the splitting axe and then chopping out chunks of it with the pick-axe using a whack & pry motion.

As rain drops began to fall, I raked up my mess and took the final load of roots over to the compost pile. I then set all those reeds ablaze and was able to get rid of a few pieces of the tree house I tore down the day before. This morning, as I finish this post over a cup of coffee at the kitchen table, rain is still falling. Looks like an inside day.


mike said...

Nice job Mike. Its the kind of work that is satisfying I think. I have a huge evergreen bush the wife wants removed. This will be an upcoming job but the ground is much too wet now. I pull up the car and hook a come-along then chop,dig and yank until she comes free. Which reminds me I have to get my chain saw tuned up.

Mike said...

Thanks Mike. I have more work to do. The rain forced me to quit early. I got the roots chopped down to ground level but I still need to go deeper. I hear that they will just grow back if you don't do a thorough job.

Good idea with the come-along though. I'll keep that one in mind!