Removing palm trees - looking better already!

rockybirdAugust 3, 2014

I had a co. out here yesterday removing palms in preparation for some landscaping.

The pics dont do it justice, but I think it is looking better already. They took a 60 footer down that went through an opening in the patio, only 2 ft. from the house, during a storm yesterday. The guy was up there swaying in the wind. I used a licensed/bonded co. - you can see why! The first trees they cut down were in the front of the house. I thought they would take them down piecemeal, but two of them they just chopped down. It was something else to see these 50-60 ft. trees hit the ground!

They checked for bird nests at my request. They said the last house they worked on had a parakeet nest with babies. The lady took them to finish raising them. I wont lie - I felt bad killing the trees. I think they are older than me. :(

Before:

After:

Storm rolling in:

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jane__ny

Wow, amazing! Where is this, what State?

Jane

    Bookmark   August 3, 2014 at 4:06PM
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rockybird

Hi Jane,

I'ts in Phoenix, AZ. I wont lie - I had a lot of fun watching them work! They still have to come back to finish with the stumps and to take two more trees down.

    Bookmark   August 3, 2014 at 4:25PM
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lazy_gardens

On or near Camelback, right? I think I see that castle in the background.

The problem with those palms is that they grow so tall that only the people far enough away from them to see the tops against a sunset get any enjoyment. Close up, they have all the appeal of a sonotube of concrete and cast no useful shade.

    Bookmark   August 3, 2014 at 4:36PM
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chispa

Rocky, are you going to plant any cactus/succulent? I'm in LA and we have a cactus/succulent garden in the front of the property. They look great and the plants are all very different. I really like the Sticks of Fire ... ours have gotten too big and we need to trim it a bit. I think DH was watering them a bit too much!

The younger palm trees look great, but the older ones can look pretty silly when they are really tall and thin, and barely have any fronds. Sometimes you just have to completely clean up a property and start over. Can't wait to see what you do with it!

    Bookmark   August 3, 2014 at 5:05PM
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cyn427

First, I LOVE your house. Second, Wow. That fellow is brave! I think new landscaping will be wonderful. The palms really had grown so tall that you couldn't enjoy them. I agree that it is hard to take down old trees and so glad you had them check for nests first! Can't wait to see your follow-up posts as you redo your yard!

    Bookmark   August 3, 2014 at 5:36PM
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rockybird

Yes, lazygardens near Camelback. Good eye! You are right - they are basically just brown poles. These werent that healthy either.

Chispa - Definitely! I will have succulents in the flower beds around the house, natural desert trees/plants in the yard areas, strip of green grass (near pool) and cacti/succulents around pool. Do you have any pics of your succulents? I have a list of plants/trees that the landscape architect made up and there must be over 50 species listed. LOL We will see how many are left after I get the price quotes.

I cannot wait to get something in the flower beds as all I see are dirt. You can see how close the one palm tree is to the house. Most of it is gone but they have to come back to finish taking it down. I actually wish they would leave the green fronds - it is so much nicer than looking at the dirt!

The concrete will get replaced with new concrete in I think sand finish, and the pool will go to a rectangle with the hot tub.

cyn427-thanks! It's an older home, but I really like the architecture. I was dismayed to find one palm had a nest in it, but it looked like it was abandoned, thank goodness. I absolutely love birds and the thought of killing one just for aesthetics would make me sad.

    Bookmark   August 3, 2014 at 7:17PM
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WMA89

Those pictures are incredible. It always amazes what some people do in the line of work.

I love your home! Please share more pictures when you can!

    Bookmark   August 3, 2014 at 8:57PM
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ravencajun Zone 8b TX

Oh wow that was a brave man to be that high in the sky on a tree with that weather around.

You didn't take out the huge beautiful red bougainvillea did you ? How I would love that thing.

    Bookmark   August 4, 2014 at 2:30AM
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rockybird

Thanks WMA89! I will definitely post more pics as it progresses...especially because I am sure I will need everyone's advice on things. :)

Next step will be demoing driveway and patio/walkways.

Ravencajun-no wya - the bougainvilliae are staying!

    Bookmark   August 4, 2014 at 10:36AM
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lynninnewmexico

Lovely home, but I can definitely see why the palms needed to come out. LazyGardens summed it up perfectly, "Close up, they have all the appeal of a sonotube of concrete and cast no useful shade. " LOL and so true!
IMO, that guy working on them was either very brave or a crazy fool to be up there with that sky, but then again, I'm a coward when it comes to possible lightening strikes.
I hope that we'll be seeing more of your wonderful home and landscaping as it progresses. Thanks for sharing it with us!
Lynn

    Bookmark   August 4, 2014 at 11:04AM
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Boopadaboo

Looking good! I can't wait to see more as you progress. I love your house.

    Bookmark   August 4, 2014 at 11:22AM
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rockybird

LOL Yes LazyGardens was right on with that statement!

I know! I couldnt believe he was up there. And I DID have a lightening strike a palm that they took down a few days before. It woke me up with a flash that lit up the room and I heard the BOOM and then a loud noise like static. The electricity flashed off and then came back on. It was scarey!

Thank you so much boopadaboo! I will definitely update with pics.

    Bookmark   August 4, 2014 at 1:11PM
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jane__ny

I just love your house!

Jane

    Bookmark   August 4, 2014 at 9:12PM
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palimpsest

This is totally off-topic and unsolicited (in this thread anyway).

You know how much I like your house. One of the things that I noticed right away in the photo was the grommet curtains :(.

The windows on your house act as part of the façade and they really need to be as organized and linear as the rest of the materials. That's why I strongly suggested ripplefold drapery when you are ready for final window treatments.

Sorry, the grommet curtains just don't do it...:(
I apologize for being so bossy.

Grommet messiness--boo!

Ripplefold: yay!

    Bookmark   August 4, 2014 at 9:36PM
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teacats

Wow!! Brave guy -- and I never knew that palm trees could grow THAT tall!!!! :)

Can't WAIT to see more photos of your home -- just LOVE every inch! :)

Here's a pin board of inspiration photos of modern desert landscaping ..... hope it helps! :)

Here is a link that might be useful: Pinterest -- modern desert landscaping!!!

    Bookmark   August 4, 2014 at 9:53PM
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rockybird

Thank you pamplisest. They are ikea curtains I bought for the master bedroom so I could move in. I did not have window coverings and needed something quick. Do you know where I can get the ones that you are suggesting? They do look much better and I totally agree with you!

teacat - thank you! gorgeous landscaping designs! I may show a couple to the landscaper. Thank you!

    Bookmark   August 5, 2014 at 1:17AM
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palimpsest

The Shade Store is one possibility. They are online, a catalog and have stores in some locations, but you could also get a local workroom to make you ripple fold or sinuous fold drapes. They are very simple: they are actually flat and the sewn-in header is what gives them their shape.

    Bookmark   August 5, 2014 at 9:40AM
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rockybird

Which one of these would work, do you think, palimpsest? That way I can keep an eye out for them locally, or maybe order them. Would you do white?

Here is a link that might be useful: shade store

This post was edited by rockybird on Wed, Aug 6, 14 at 1:59

    Bookmark   August 5, 2014 at 11:22PM
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nosoccermom

I thought you might like to see the renovation/remodeling of a similar house in Palm Springs.

Here is a link that might be useful: Pools and Martinis in Palm Springs

    Bookmark   August 6, 2014 at 8:34AM
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palimpsest

I would probably do white, maybe something a bit coarse and textural.

    Bookmark   August 6, 2014 at 9:19AM
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lazy_gardens

I've actually been in that style house - perhaps watched the submarine races from a vantage point above that house. :)

Grommet drapes would work, but they have to be rigged to maintain the spacing and a pronounced ripple when closed, which is a function of the hardware and pully system - often used as side panels and not closed. Consider them over a flat sheer panel that slide side to side (the IKEA panels)

Seriously consider using a sunbrella type fabric either as the whole curtain or as a sheer flat panel behinf the decor drapes - they have drapery weight linen and heavy gauze look-alikes that can stand the sun beating on them.

===========
The atrium enclosure is a great place to grow the tropicals that need a bit more shade and water, especially if you rig sunshades or shade sails. Up close, lush and an oasis. Dwarf date palm, Cycads, many succulents, and lots of house plants like ficus benjamani, sanseveria, spider plant ... if it will grow in a NY loft, it will think your atrium is just dandy.

    Bookmark   August 6, 2014 at 10:08AM
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louislinus

Ikea has drapes with the backing to create ripplefold. I just looked at them with my upholsterer and seamstress friend on Monday. You can also just buy the backing that makes the ripplefold and attach it to any fabric. This is what I am going to do with my drapery panels instead of having pinch pleats put in.

And yes your house is to die for!!

    Bookmark   August 6, 2014 at 10:43AM
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louislinus

This is what the back of the Ikea Vivian drapes look like (and at 9.99 a pair you can't beat the price.) It's not going to be as nice as a true ripplefold with a track but it is very similar in look.

    Bookmark   August 6, 2014 at 10:51AM
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outsideplaying_gw

That must have been fascinating to watch. It's going to look fabulous with the new desert landscaping. And Pal, you nailed it with the ripple fold drapery.

    Bookmark   August 6, 2014 at 11:04AM
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melle_sacto

Wow I love it -- the new landscape sounds gorgeous and your home is a beautiful style.

    Bookmark   August 6, 2014 at 11:10AM
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rgps

Rocky, big improvement. When the pipes freeze up here we live a mile or so down the road from you and look forward to seeing your relandscaping as we need to do some of our own this winter. Love your house.

    Bookmark   August 6, 2014 at 2:35PM
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palimpsest

I did double ripple-fold: sheers under textured for an apartment with a glass end wall in each room:

    Bookmark   August 6, 2014 at 3:18PM
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rockybird

Thank you everyone!

Pamplisest - That is a big help. I might temporarily replace them with the ikea ones that louislinus suggests until I can find some quality ones that arent too expensive. Do you think the ikea ones would be an improvement? I like your bedroom - especially your dresser!

Louislinus thanks! I am thinking I will buy the ikea ones for now and maybe replace them later? 9.99 is so cheap! Alternatively, I may have to get custom because the height is not standard.

nosoccormom-that is an amazing house! I hope mine looks half as good as it does. I swear I saw that house for sale when I was in PS last year.

lazygardens - I wish there were water for submarines around here, but then I couldnt afford to live here! That is good to know about the grommet. I dont want to change the hardware. Thank you!

rgps - small world! This is a great part of town-central to everything.

Thank you melle sacto and outsideplaying! It's just one small step in the landscaping, but it feels good to have made even a little progress!

This post was edited by rockybird on Thu, Aug 7, 14 at 0:01

    Bookmark   August 6, 2014 at 10:33PM
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