Cutting the Avocado Tree

I’ve been cutting the tops off the avocado tree. The branches have grown up into the wires, and that’s been a challenge. I think I’m supposed to call an arborist to deal with it, but I’ve been using a rope and some tension, and tactical cutting, bit by bit.

Climbing up into the canopy, it smells like shit. Like bird shit or something else foul. Old cuts and stumps atop the trunk. Strap a rope up the branch, come down the ladder, and pull on the rope in the direction I want. Tie it down to the patio column, the rope taut.

Climb up again, and start cutting a foot below. The branches cut easily; the wood is soft and pulpy.

A half inch cut here, a half inch there, cut through the bark so it won’t peel, cut a small divot out, an inch deep opposite the direction you want it to fall, and the branch starts to lean. Rush down the ladder, and try to guide the branch to fall in the right direction.

Next year, I’m going to be cutting this by January, because I read that avocados are pruned at that time in California.

The tree produces not-too-tasty fruits, but this was planted by my father, and I have memories of this tree, and him, cutting it each year.





Leave a Reply