Saturday, April 2, 2011


It came to my attention yesterday that in my list of things for the property, I mentioned something called a "Party Tree".  Some of you might be wondering just what the heck that is?

Here it is.  It's a giant tree off the front porch. Looks like something from a Spielberg movie. Be sure and click on each to see it in detail. Side note, these pics were taken in the dead of winter, so the tree was in its dormant phase.  This is a huge Mesquite tree, estimated to be at least several decades old, possibly a hundred. 

At our family's house at the other end of the property, their house also sits next to another huge old mesquite (ironically, these are the two oldest mesquites on the property), and every time we had family get togethers, everyone ended up sitting around and under the tree. So she coined the term "Party Tree" for us when we were all out there.  She built cobblestone paths around it, an arbor, a pond with a water feature, ferns, wind chimes, and seating all around.  It's a great place to hang out.  Since we'll have the other "twin tree" on the property, we feel it needs to be a party tree as well.   

So the first thing I'd like to do is start cleaning it up, pruning the branches that need to be pruned, cleaning out some of the dead stuff, and then working the area under it.  We'll need some seating, a table and chairs, and eventually, I'd like a water feature as well.  There's nothing more relaxing than the sound of moving water.  Another thing I want to do is put white lights in the tree.  Not a lot like Christmas, but a few diagonal strands would look great during a dinner party as well, and of course they don't have to be turned on all the time.

We're actually going to make this tree and the area around it a focal point of the porch by adding a new set of porch steps off the front door that will lead people in this direction (in fact this second picture was taken while leaning off the porch).   

Ironically, I did some Googling of the term "Party Tree" and found out that a party tree plays a significant role in the Lord of the Rings series of novels.
Here is an artist rendering of the Hobbit's favorite party tree.  If you look really closely, you can see our tree in that one, somewhere, ha ha.  Ironic that we've called it the "party tree" for years and didn't realize the role in played in the novel.  Kind of cool actually.  In this painting, I actually like how the ribbons are on there for special occasions.  Might be neat to do for a birthday party.  Again, the pics of our party tree above were taken in the dead of winter so it had not yet greened out, but it is very pretty in the Spring and Summer as well, not unlike this one from the land of the Hobbits!

So that's our "Party Tree".  A place to gather during parties, a place to have a nice leisurely dinner on a cool evening, a place to just sit and relax in the shade of an old friend.  I think it even looks like it needs a name.  Is it weird to name your tree?  I don't think so.  Any suggestions?  

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