Planning for Post Fire Cleanup and Looking Ahead in General

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The sun is strong enough to melt an oak leaf down into the snow.

The sun is getting stronger.  It was cold yesterday, but we’ve had enough melting so that we could get a better look at what was left after the fire and to see what how far the fire actually extended from the house.  The footprint was bigger around the stone walls of the foundation than I expected.  There were also a lot more nails that fell outside of the hole than we would have hoped.  It’s going to take some serious time with a magnet to get that really cleaned up and we better do it before the grass really starts growing.  We also talked about rounding up some of the old, rusted barbed wire fencing and throwing it in the hole before we fill it in.  D. thinks we should knock down some of the interior walls, but I’m not so sure.  They make the exterior walls more stable and given all the nails and other hazards in the hole, I’m not sure it is either very safe or worth our time to do that given all the nails and other metal junk in the hole.

We walked around and stood at the three sites where we think we might possible build a house in the future discussing the pros and cons of each of them.  I think we’re probably agreed that the hill where we are dismantling the small barn is probably the best of them, though it is further from the orchard and the present garden and although it will need some trees, both deciduous trees to the south for shade in the summer and a row or two of evergreens to the north and west to break the wind.

The only “work” we did yesterday was to light a large multiflora rose on fire, hoping to clear some of the dead wood out of the way so that digging it out by the roots will be easier.  We didn’t walk all the way to the back, but we did retrieve the trail cam from it’s most recent home and moved it to an area where there is significant deer from tracks to the bark completely worn off of a small tree due to a buck rubbing antlers against it in the fall.  I’m hoping for some good pictures and possibly to find shed antlers in the spring.

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The rabbits are enjoying tender bark from watersprouts and other branches pruned from the apple trees several weeks ago.

Our walk through the orchard showed me that the bunnies are enjoying the buffet we left for them several weeks ago when we pruned watersprouts from the apple trees.  There is still more work to do out there, but our time was a little too short yesterday and it was awfully cold to be lifting a ladder around in the crusty snow and gripping hand tools, but now that it is mid-February, winter can’t really last forever.

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