Lost: Columnar Scotch Pine Tree - November 2023

Planted early this year - with MUCH fanfare - my Columnar Scotch Pine tree is dead.  I yanked it out and returned it for a store credit.  

Earlier this Fall, I noticed that it was *really* struggling, so I decided to do something pretty drastic:  transplanting it.  

I also decided - as part of the transplant process - to lop-off all the dead parts.  I thought that maybe it wanted more sun, so I put it by the boardwalk.  Here's what it looked like when I transplanted it in September:  some green needles, but not doing well:


Six weeks later, it was gone.  Below is what it looked like before I dug it out:  no more green needles.


I've talked about how I haven't, historically done enough with conifers.  But, part of the reason for that negligence is because I've had such bad luck with them.  This is another lost conifer in a long-line of them. 

Have I made up for things with my new Conifer Garden?  Maybe.  But, might they all end up like this columnar Scotch Pine?  Maybe, too.  


2023 marks my seventh tree-planting season.  This is my fourth lost tree - the first two being Green Giant Thulas.  The latest being the Japanese Flowering Cherry.  And now this Columnar Scotch Pine.

For evergreen losses: a weeping Alaskan Cedar, a Fraser Fir, a larger Canadian Hemlock, 3 smaller Canadian Hemlocks, a dwarf Alberta Spruce, a tiny Weeping Contorted Larch, a weeping Japanese White Pine, two Green Giant Thujas and now this columnar Scotch Pine.  12 of the 28 lost have been evergreen/conifers.

We (now) have 70 of 98 trees that we've planted.   71.45% success rate over seven years.  

98 trees planted/7 growing seasons = 14 trees on average planted each season
70 trees alive/7 growing seasons = 10 trees on average survive each season.

Here's the full accounting:

2017 (9 planted. 5 Dead. 6 total (including 2 replacements) of the original annual total alive now):
1. Flowering Pear in backyard on north side.
2. Flowering Pear in front yard by garage. (LOST and replaced)
3. Japanese flowering cherry.  Lost in 2023.  Could be the Walnut tree that took it.
4 and 5: 2 Lindens that I espalier'd and placed by the south fence line near our kitchen windows.
6. A Dawn Redwood from Earth Day 2017 (LOST and replaced)
7. Nat's Saucer Magnolia in our front yard
8. A Corkscrew Willow all the way in the back (LOST)
9. A Crimson King Norway Maple near the trampoline

2018 (17 planted. 6 Dead):
10. Another flowering pear from Earth Day 2018
11. Red Maple Sun Valley tree from Earth Day 2018.
12. Weeping Cedar tree - our first evergreen.  (LOST)
13. The weeping flowering cherry tree that the Babe planted for Earth Day 2018.
14, 15, 16, 17, 18, 19, 20, 21. These Frans Fontaine Hornbeams
22. A replacement Chanticleer Pear tree (3" caliper) out front by our garage
23. Our second evergreen - a short Fraser Fir Christmas Tree out by the trampoline. (LOST)
24. This Canadian Hemlock that is the first of nine that our landscape plan calls for in the backyard. (LOST)
25. Our replanted/replacement Dawn Redwood. Same spot as the first.
26. This teeny-tiny Bald Cypress that I planted in the front yard, in between our driveway and our neighbor to the north.

2019 (9 planted.  5 Dead):
27, 28, 29.  A set of three small Canadian Hemlock Trees in our far backyard. (Two Lost)
30, 31, 32.  This second set of three small Canadian Hemlocks along the north fence line. (One Lost)
33.  My new Weeping White Spruce that will only grow about 4' wide placed near the fence line alongside the espalier'd Lindens.
34.  A NEW Dwarf Alberta Spruce planted near the south fence line.  Our first "dwarf" tree.
35.  This new Hakuro Nishiki Willow (Dappled Willow) tree planted close to the flowering cherry on the southside.  LOST - October 2020.

37.  A very thin Lombardy Poplar tree - columnar form - in the way back wood chip area.  LOST - July 2020.
38, 39, 40, 41, 42, 43, 44, 45.  These apple trees in a Belgian Fence espalier.
46.  A small Northern Red Oak tree - our first Oak tree planted.
47.  A 'decapitated' Lavender Twist Weeping Redbud that I planted on a whim.
48.  A replacement (from the nursery) Lavender Twist Redbud planted close to the brother.
49.  A tall(ish) London Plane tree that suffered some transplant and frost shock, but seemed to recover. 
50.  Our second contorted tree - this one inspired by Disneyland Paris: a Harry Lauder's Walking Stick tree.
51.  Our third contorted tree - but one that checks A LOT of boxes.  Deciduous conifer.  Weeping.  Contorted.  Japanese.  Planted behind the front Maple - the Horstmann's Recursive Weeping Contorted Larch.  LOST - Aug 2020.
52.  Via the Morton Arboretum Plant Sale - a columnar tree from Japan - the Red Fox Katsura Tree that I planted as an understory tree to the dying Chanticleer Pear Tree next to our driveway. 

2021 (16 planted and 13 alive):
53.  A tiny bareroot Shagbark Hickory from the Benet Academy Environmental Club planted in the backyard.   LOST - May 2023
54.  Our first Japanese Maple - a dwarf Tamukeyama Maple planted in the south backyard bed LOST - May 2023
55.  A large Weeping Nootka Falsecypress from Wannemaker's planted in the new bed on the northside. 
56.  A long-sought-after Emperor I Japanese Maple - our second Japanese Maple - that is now planted on the border near our new-to-be-created fire pit area in the backyard. 
59.  A dwarf Japanese White Pine - Pinus Parviflora Nana (or perhaps something else).  LOST 2022.
64.  A second, tiny Ginko tree - this was a replacement for #62 - planted 'ib2dw'.
65.  A small - and ALL Green - Pagoda Dogwood (Cornus alternifolia) planted in front of the back Yews.
66. 67. 68.  A trio of London Planetree 'Bloodgood' trees that are planted along the fence that I'm going to attempt to pleach.

2022 (9 planted and 7 alive):
69. 70. 71. 72. 73. 74. Six Green Giant Thujas trees planted as an upright evergreen layer in the backyard. Thuja standishii plicata. TWO LOST.  May 2023.
75. A small Saratoga Ginko tree planted in our front yard by the front walk.
76.  A London Planetree Exclamation planted in our parkway.  A bandit tree of sorts.

2023 (21 planted1 and 20 alive):
78. Small, Columnar Scotch Pine from Home Depot in early Spring 2023. Lost in October of 2023.
79 and 80. Dwarf "witches broom" Ginkgo trees - Spring Grove - planted on either side of our back stoop.
81. A (very small) Acer palmatum Emperor 1 Japanese Maple planted in the kitchen window bed by the row of Astilbes.
82. A low-grafted Waterfall Japanese Maple tree - Acer palmatum dissectum 'Waterfall'.
83. A small, but upright red lace-leaf Japanese Maple - Unknown variety planted amongst the hostas on the north side understory bed.
84. The first of three trees from Mr. Maple - a one-gallon Acer palmatum 'Firefly' that is planted in the Understory garden in back.
85. The second of three trees from Mr. Maple - another one-gallon Japanese Maple: Acer palmatum 'First Ghost' back by the firepit.
86. The third tree from Mr. Maple - an upright green dissectum Japanese maple that I planted near the failing (in decline) Japanese Cherry Tree.
87. Silver Maple Volunteer Seedling in Kitchen Window Border, behind the Astilbes.
88. A high-grafted (5#) Acer palmatum Inaba Shadire planted by the wine barrel water spitter in the backyard.
89. This two-year-old Northern Catalpa volunteer that is on the corner of our patio.
90 and 91: A pair of Kousa Dogwood Trees planted to espalier against garage sidewall.92. A dwarf conifer tree: Baby Blue Spruce - planted IB2DWs near the sidewalk.
93. A Weeping Norway Spruce 'Pendula' planted IB2DWs - west of the Bald Cypress.
94. A second Weeping Norway Spruce - in my new "Conifer Garden". IB2DWs extended.
95. A narrow, upright conifer tree - Montrose Charm White Spruce in the 'Conifer Garden' IB2DWs.
96. The 2nd Baby Blue Spruce tree planted IB2DWs in the new 'Conifer Garden' closer to the Bald Cypress.
97. A 3rd Baby Blue Spruce tree planted in back by the Lindens - viewable from the Kitchen.
98. I'm calling it a tree (not a shrub) - a Royal Purple Smoke Tree planted IB2Dws.

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