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In the terraces at the front of the house is a number of larger and mature Callistemon(Bottle Brush) trees.

One of the larger ones is near the North East corner of the house.  Unfortunately this tree is starting to cast shadow on our solar panels, so it is going to need a big chop

…and a big chop it got!

 

We have not ‘properly’ identified this tree..  but it is a paperbark melaleuca with white flowers, so it could be a few things.  It is most likely Melaleuca saligna and Callistemon salignus (now Melaleuca salicina).

We have pruned this tree in the past, but not to the extent that we are going to this time.  Our plan is to take the top 2-4 metres off the tree.

Two things are driving us to prune the tree.

  1. It is getting so tall that we can almost not reach the top and soon it will be out of reach.
  2. The tree is now high enough to be shadow-casting onto our Solar Panels.

Pruning will also encourage new growth and flowers…   so there is a big upside.

Big Callistemon - Pre-pruning

It took a little work to get the top off the tree.  The fact that it is on the terraces just makes it impossible to find a decent and safe ladder spot.  But we got there.

With Chainsaw in hand, hanging off the top of extended step ladder we finally got to a position that allowed to cut cleanly and low enough. Everything went smoothly, and we didn’t kill anything(or ourselves).

 

The photos below show you how much we took off.  In six to twelve months we should see lots of regrowth and the ‘pruning’ areas should not be so apparent.

Big Callistemon - Pre-pruning
Big Callistemon - Pre-pruning
Big Callistemon - Post-pruning
Big Callistemon - Post-pruning

You may have noticed that we left one big branch sticking up all by itself!?

There is a reason.   The branch holds a large misteltoe – most likely a Dendrophthoe vitellina.  We left the branch so that the mistletoe can survive and grow.  They are a very important part of the local environment.

We have many mistletoes in the tree across the property.  Some include; Amyema miquelli, Amyema congener ssp congenerDendrophthoe vitellina and Amyema pendula. 

We have started leaving branches on many of the trees that we cut or prune. This is to encourage the growth of more mistletoes and therefore mistletoe birds and diversity.