I got those sugar maple blues


Uh oh. That's all I could think when I saw this remarkable sugar maple at Awbury Arboretum yesterday. It's an apt and glorious greeting, entirely appropriate at a place like Awbury, which reveres its trees. But what about my sugar maples? They're less than a decade old and already they're huge. Already, too, I'm worried that they'll get as big as this one, which is far too big for the space out in front of my house. And oh, the sidewalk!

If you read my story in the Home & Design section last week - second and last installment coming this Friday - you know that I've learned some difficult lessons with my ever-evolving garden. Unfortunately, they don't include this one - trees like sugar maples need more room than you can imagine. Thought that was accounted for, but I see from Awbury's magnificent specimen that mine are going to get way bigger and become a serious problem, despite assurances from the neighbor who ordered them and helped us plant. We'll see, but here we go: Another thing to worry about.

Meanwhile, spending a morning at Awbury was pure pleasure. This is a peaceful, beautiful place, one that comes alive when you're walking the grounds with smart plant people. My education continues ...