Thursday, September 4, 2008

Would you laugh, or cry?




I've probably mentioned that I am trying to sell my house. So it goes without saying (she says) that I am trying to keep it clean and groomed looking. I remarked out loud the other day that I was going to get a handyman to trim the hedge in my front yard. It was getting too tall and to unkempt looking. Not totally terrible, but I thought a neater look was in order. Better curb appeal. I had gotten one estimate for several hundred dollars, and had no intention of paying that, so I was calling a few local handy guys. And, blabbermouth that I am, I mentioned all of this to my sister and Nancy, one of her friends.

Just when you start to feel that life has no more surprises, you get a surprise. Yesterday I got home about 8:00 pm, tired and looking forward to an hour of rest before bedtime. As I drove up to my house I looked in horror to see, in the dim light of a long day, a pile, of brush about 4 feet high and covering my whole front lawn, twigs and branches and leaves. With my sister and Nancy standing proudly next to a hedge that looked like it had been assaulted by a drunken axe murderer.

About 2/3 of the hedge had been trimmed, and its profile rolled and dipped like a hurricane driven surf, ending in a sharp upward turn where they had evidently lost interest, so that they last 5 feet or so of hedge was about 4 feet taller than the rest. The shortest part of the hedge was almost two feet lower than I wanted it cut. I was nearly speechless but told them, really, they shouldn't have put themselves out like that, but they explained that "it had to be done" and they didn't want me to spend so much money on it. And oh, they were done for the night and thought it would be okay to just leave the massive trimmings on the front lawn for a couple of days.

I told them that my city ordinance wouldn't allow that, and I began to drag branches to the back yard. I know they had to be tired, but they pitched right in, to give the devils their due. We filled the only 10 yard waste bags I had, and left a huge pile next to my garage, which it will take me several days to cut and bind for trash pick up. And there will be plenty left over to fill several more yard waste bags. On top of that, there's several more feet of hedge to trim.

My sister and Nancy meant well, obviously. I thanked them for all their hard work, but as they went to Nancy's car, my sister whispered to me, "are you really mad?" I was glad for the hint that her aesthetic judgment isn't as bad as I'd feared, but I told her that no, I was grateful for their help. I can't say this to them, so I will say it here: they are the worst hedge pruners in the entire world.

The hedge looks both half done and half dead, and if I were house hunting I would see it as a huge liability. But then, no one bought the house when I thought it looked good, so anything is possible. I'm keeping my fingers crossed.

6 comments:

Snowbird said...

Oh no!! It kind of looks like my Bob the Builder got to your hedge!

Tink *~*~* said...

Yeah. Ok, see, the problem with trimming a hedge THAT much in one swell foop is that those branches on the inside that haven't had access to the raw stuff of photosynthesis for ever will persist in being quite nakey. I'm thinkin' I would have killed them.

Oh and I decided to randomly click on some past post and found your little adventure to Cocoa Beach. Girlfriend, I love to shop and I love the beach. Next time, vacation on THIS coast and I'll gladly adventure along with you! :D

Tink *~*~*

gail said...

Snowbird, your Bob is an artist compared to my well intended friends!
I think the hedge may now indeed be both naked and dead, Tink. And I actually thought about you when I was in Cocoa Beach, because we were soooo close to disney, but no such fun on that trip!

Digital Flower Pictures said...

Don't worry your hedge will be back. I would just even it up and keep the new growth even.

Hire a professional next time :lol:

Tootie said...

I have to agree with the last comment. I've seen hedge in this neighborhood, scalped down to bare wood that hadn't seen the light of day for years. It looked bad at first, but in a pretty short time little green sprigs came out all over them and they greened up gradually until they looked great! In my opinion, it looks much nicer if they get trimmed regularly, but we can't always get it done. :-)

On the other hand, sometimes if the hedge is really old and the woody part is too big; I think you just have to bite the bullet, rip it out and start over again.

But since your house is for sale, look at the bright side; a prospective buyer will look at the whole picture and think: Wow, there's an opportunity for me to re-landscape, making the lawn exactly the way I want it! As opposed to: Wow, that owner has put so much money, time and effort into making that lawn perfect and just the way they like it; (And it's all included in the price of the house) but it really isn't what I like. So that would mean spending a lot of time and money to tear out all the perfect landscaping and more to replace it all. So, they just pass it by.

That's my theory and I'm stickin to it! :-)

That was a great story and why I'm glad I didn't have sisters. :-)

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