Although the Norway Maple blesses us by shedding leaves that we can use to bank the house with, the Norway maple curses our soil with its gnarly roots, so close to the surface, and curses the property with the mess it makes: Here, a fallen branch taken down by the wind that followed after the snow storm.

And even the leaves are a mixed blessing: Mildew always spikes in my tomato patch after the Norway Maple leaves — hideously discolored with cancerous-looking black spots — begin to fall.

I cut one down; I should cut the other down!