I Spoke to Soon about the Yard

Just as I thought my yard was rounding into shape before the heat of July and August arrived, we got hit with a derecho. What is a derecho? Basically, it’s about as nasty as a rainstorm gets in the Midwest United States without it being a full-on tornado. We are talking about winds in excess of 80 miles per hour and a lot of rain. Like inches of rain in the matter of a few hours. Combined with our already saturated soil and you get some nice flash flooding. My backyard looked like a swamp.

The aftermath was pretty ugly. My yard and home escaped major damage unlike some of my neighbors who completely lost trees or saw wooden playsets crumpled on the ground like bonfire piles:

Playground Down

My newly plants London planetree was on its side having bobbed out of its hole like a cork as the water level rose higher than the surrounding grass for much of the evening. This morning I was able to secure it back into place, but I am guessing that the stress might make its survival suspect. Here’s to hoping.

Even more concern to me is the damage to established trees. My autumn blaze maple, replanted from the front yard and thriving in its new location, now has a pretty nice bend:

Bent Maple

The tree might grow straight again, but it might require some staking to regain its formally upright habit. There is some damage to the bark. Hopefully nothing is ultimately fatal. I would hate to lose another tree especially one as large and vigorous as this particular maple.

The red oaks and Norway spruces that guard the property line to the north seem relatively unscathed, but like the maple some of the oaks seem to have a different bent than prior to the storm:

Bent Oak

As things dry out and the sun shines there is a good chance that the trees will straighten on their own. If this is climate change I am on record as thinking it sucks.


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