Tuesday, October 15, 2013

Tidying the Place Up a Bit

When we first moved here, I was opposed to the idea of having a brush pile.  I quickly learned that it's pretty much mandatory to have a dedicated place on the property to put large yard debris.  The pile contains our brush and stuff from our next-door neighbors at Hartwood Winery.

We manage the pile to keep it from getting out of hand, pushing it and repiling it with the tractor when necessary.  From time to time (every couple of years, in our case) the pile needs a drastic rejuvenation ... with fire ... and fall is the perfect time to do this.

Fireman son-in-law is our designated brush pile burner, since he is highly trained and does stuff like this for a living.  Last Tuesday, the day before we were expecting five straight days of rain, was the designated day.

I wasn't home that day for the actual ignition or the big fiery part of the burn.  The pile was pretty much finished burning, with only a smoldering center by the time I saw it.

The next step will be to clean up the mess, get rid of any big pieces that are left, and smooth out the remains so I can plant grass in this spot. 
The place for us to pile any future brush and yard debris will be moving to the rear of our property, beyond that second fence line you can barely see in the photo above, where it isn't visible from practically everywhere.  We will not making a huge heap this time.  Instead, we will pile brush and branches along the back tree line to act as a natural hedgerow habitat for birds and other critters.


  1. I remember where I grew up it seemed like everybody had an incinerator can in their back yard for burning stuff. Our got so old and rusty that one day I poked it with a stick and the whole bottom fell apart. Your post brought that memory back.

    Read about the potluck on the 19th. So wish I could come but we have a wedding to go to.

  2. What an excellent idea! I want to do that, too!

  3. Thanks, Janie! I know the critters will appreciate the extra protection, and I will love not having a pile of brush in my line of sight.

  4. Connie- I just love the smell of a "clean up" fire in the Autumn. There is nothing like it in the world. Great idea there! xo Diana

  5. We do the same thing here, Connie. We have a campfire area that we pile small twigs and branches. Eventually it gets pretty big - especially after we have any large limbs or trees that topple during the summer. We do keep some of the brush on the pile during the winter because the birds love to hide in there! The really big stuff, we haul to the edge of the property for protection for the small creatures. :)

    xoxo laurie

  6. I figured every home on a plot of land had a rubbish, or burn pile. Especially if you aren't in the city limits. Great idea for the future pile!

  7. You will love your own secret garden, Connie. We established one last spring on two sides of our property. Now wild grape vines are threading their way through making lush what was once raw looking. It’s gorgeous and a welcome habitat for a variety of birds, rabbits and squirrels. Country living is a joy.


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