Winter Projects (and well beyond) – Boxwood Handles

Some of the elements of this ongoing litany are monumental and strategic, others are more mundane and simply part of the shop wallpaper, so to speak.  This is one of those times.

Many years ago, a friend was remodeling his garden and removing some pretty nice boxwood bushes.  He made sure to save me a couple buckets full of trunks and branches, and they are awaiting my ministrations to turn them into handles and tools.  As I embark on my tool cabinet there will certainly be times when this or that tool needs a new handle.  Well, if not actually “needs” a new handle, would certainly be more comely with a new one.

It reminds me of the Monday maybe thirty (?) years ago when chatting with one of my co-workers. He was a weekend volunteer at a Maryland historic home for a War of Independence general or some such.  I knew that the residence and grounds were undergoing some major renovation and restoration.

“I was thinking of you over the weekend,” he said,

“Really?  Why?”

“We finally started to return the gardens to their 1790 configuration and are ripping out all the mid-19th century gardens.  We yanked out about 100 boxwood trees and took them to the dump.   Maybe I should’ve called you.”

“Yeah, you should’ve called me.”

“It wasn’t that big a deal, they were really small trees.”

“How big?”

“Oh, not so big.  I don’t think any were taller than me, and the trunks were only about the size of my thigh at the base, some maybe a little bigger.”  He was a little bit husky, so I would guess the century-and-a-half-old boxwood stumps were roughly 8-10 inches in diameter.

All hauled to the dump.

Stake.  Heart.

I got over it.  Sorta.