Readers may recall that the large Silver Maple across the street from WC’s house had received a death warrant. The execution occurred today. First, a reminder of just how big this tree was.
It was likely more than 100-110 years old and more than 100 feet tall. But it was deemed a hazard. And likely was. The execution crew arrived about 9:30 AM on September 19. Nine crew members, a crane, a man lift, a huge chipper, a very large dumpster truck for the trunk pieces, a forklift to load them, and six (!) chain saws, including one with a 48″ blade.
Big trees like this are cut from the top down, with the pieces held by crane cables while they are cut.
The pieces were lowered to the ground, limbed and the bucked into 15-20 foot lengths.
It’s all very orderly efficient and very, very loud.
The size of the limbs they ran through the chipper was astonishing. This one was at least eight inches in diameter.
Gradually, in 20-30 foot long pieces, they brought the tree down.
As they worked their way down the tree, they used larger cable and switched to the bigger hook on the crane.
The small loader actually tipped forward when it lifted this log, and had to push itself back upright.
You can see that the center of the Silver Maple stump was indeed rotted out. Note the death warrant still stapled to the side of the tree.
The trunks will be dried, split and sold as firewood. The chips will be dried and sold as mulch.
You can see that 40-50% of the base of the tree was rotted out. The sound wood on the south side – the part nearest WC’s house – had only about 2 inches of sound wood.
Just under seven feet at the widest point. At least 100 years old; it was big enough in 1913 that the sidewalk was poured around it.
It was a quick execution. One hour and fifteen minutes from arrival to completion of cleanup and departure.
Now there’s a visual gap on the north side of Alturas Street. It’s the visual equivalent to a missing tooth. You can’t stop looking. In the spring the big stump will be ground out, soil placed there and Kim, whose house adjoined the tree, will get to pick a new tree from an approved list.
R.I.P. Silver Maple, 1890(?) – 2019.