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  1. #1
    Join Date
    Jan. 5, 2010
    Location
    VA--> Washington (state)
    Posts
    346

    Default Just moved in: neighbor OCD about my leaves

    So we just bought a new house (our first about 2 mos ago, across the country from where we've lived for our 32y of life and I need some help figuring out if I'm a "good new neighbor" or if Im just awful. So COTHers, please weigh in!

    Our spiffy new house is in Western Washington state, with 1/2 acre lots & between me and my two adjacent neighbors, a backyard fence. In front, on the front side propery lines (lots are rectangular with house facing short side) we have line of thick shrubs bordering one neighbor and on the other, two Japanese cherry trees and low perennials.

    Prob is neighbor on the cherry tree side : every day this & las week, Ive either seen or heard him take his blower and blow leaves from our deciduous cherry trees back onto our "side" of the shared mulch bed and road area. Where I grew up (Loudoun county VA), I lived on farms and once the leaves all came down, we cleaned the. Up. Between undergrad, grad school & renting apts/houses for the past almost 15 y, I've either not had neighbors I cared about, didn't have a yard, or had a fence that delineated mine/theirs.

    So folks, I understand the leaves are falling (hello Fall!), they are under said neighbors also decidous trees less than 3 ft away but short of raking leaves everyday, should I care or should I build a fence or am I totally the horrible ignorant neighbor?

    Ps. I did grow up in a barn- a converted bank barn actually- but we didn't have cars on blocks.
    And the wise, Jack Daniels drinking, slow-truck-driving, veteran TB handler who took "no shit from no hoss Miss L, y'hear," said: "She aint wrapped too tight."



  2. #2
    Join Date
    Jul. 1, 2000
    Location
    Warrenton, VA, USA
    Posts
    1,434

    Default

    IMO, ignore said neighbor. Not your problem.


    1 members found this post helpful.

  3. #3
    Join Date
    Jul. 3, 2012
    Posts
    1,885

    Default

    I think if he's just keeping his side neat, then I'd say let him enjoy his OCD. Maybe his wife sent him out to play. ;-)


    1 members found this post helpful.

  4. #4
    Join Date
    Dec. 21, 2005
    Location
    Colorado Springs, CO
    Posts
    1,841

    Default

    Your neighbor sounds like he is a pain in the ass.

    If it were my tree dropping leaves and a neighbor wanted to blow them into my yard I'd probably just put up with it and rake them all up when they were down.

    My last house had an apple tree that dropped apples into my neighbor's yard. Those I would go over and pick up once a week on trash day. I didn't technically have to, but I felt better for doing it. The leaves were theirs to deal with though.
    "Is it ignorance or apathy? Hey, I don't know and I don't care." ~Jimmy Buffett



  5. #5
    Join Date
    Feb. 28, 2006
    Location
    The rocky part of KY
    Posts
    9,206

    Default

    Nope. Your neighbor is just OCD about the leaves, just like your title says. I've not noticed people getting too worked up about leaves here in KY, but you'd go nuts if you did. Back in CA though, we lived for a while in a neighborhood of discontent, all the old folks on the block hated each other and it was all over trees and stuff like that .
    Courageous Weenie Eventer Wannabe
    Incredible Invisible



  6. #6
    Join Date
    Jan. 14, 2003
    Location
    Massachusetts
    Posts
    5,735

    Default

    I think if he were blowing them back into my yard rather than just obsessively picking them up on his side, I would put up a fence just on general principle.


    1 members found this post helpful.

  7. #7
    Join Date
    Jan. 9, 2009
    Location
    a little north of Columbus GA
    Posts
    1,893

    Default

    Yay, more leaf mulch compost for you! You'll need it for your garden.

    Sounds like he's just cleaning up his yard. Unless he starts complaining about it I wouldn't worry too much. It will be over soon enough.

    That said, what are your other neighbors doing about leaves? If they all keep up with the raking and you're the only one who doesn't, you may want to consider making time for it to keep the peace.

    Do you have a homeowner's association with covenants? That's another place to look. If there's a rule about keeping the yard tidy, you may start getting warning notices in the mail.

    Best thing to do here is bake some muffins or cookies, wait until he starts up the leaf blower, and then go over there and _ask_ if there's a problem.
    --
    Wendy
    ... and Patrick


    2 members found this post helpful.

  8. #8
    Join Date
    Sep. 7, 2004
    Location
    Medford Oregon
    Posts
    914

    Default

    We had a neighbor who we asked if he'd blow all his leaves in our yard..lol. We compost all our leaves in a big pile and he was kind enough to blow all his leaves to our pile and then did our yard as well.



  9. #9
    Join Date
    Oct. 27, 2009
    Posts
    1,649

    Default

    I live in western WA too... So welcome!!!

    And ignore your OCD neighbor. No point in cleaning up the leaves yet unless you want to be back out doing it again tomorrow, might as well wait until they're all down. That's what I do anyway! Sounds like your neighbor has far too much time on his hands

    Your neighbor's behavior makes me wonder what area you're in... If you're in Bellevue, Kirkland, Redmond, etc then that sounds about par for the course! LOL



  10. #10
    Join Date
    Nov. 13, 2005
    Location
    between the mountains and the sea, North Carolina
    Posts
    2,936

    Default

    Ignore it. We live in a downtown neighborhood and have done nothing about our leaves yet...my Dad says, 'wait till they all fall, no point in leaf blowing every weekend between now and when "winter" starts.' Your property, do what you want with it.

    If one of our neighbors is OCD enough to care that our yard being leaf free, they can do the leaf blowing or raking.
    "Choose to chance the rapids, and dare to dance the tides" - Garth Brooks
    "With your permission, dear, I'll take my fences one at a time" - Maggie Smith, Downton Abbey



  11. #11
    Join Date
    Feb. 25, 2012
    Location
    Montana
    Posts
    2,286

    Default

    My MOTHER is totally OCD about leaves-i'm totally a "wait till they fall then rake 'em" kind of girl but she is a "every day get ahead of the crowd" kind of raker. And I tend to be visiting her in the falls so we do a LOT of leaf activity!

    But.. I would also say good neighbors are like GOLD. I would definitely go over, introduce myself, chit chat,, be super duper pleasant, not mention the leaves unless he does, just be really really nice. One of our neighbors has s aright of way across our property. we had issues of a) them leaving their gate open and their dogs pooping all over our yard and hay area, and b) the kids driving like richard petty. and they liked to let off fireworks from their yard OVER MY HORSE PASTURE. Exciting!!!! AllI can say is I am soooo glad we did not start the war of the roses-we worked it out about the gate, we filled in potholes with the understanding the kids would slow down, myhusband offered to plow them out in the winter (a two hour job) adn this summer, when I had my hay delivered, here came the boys, walking over. They came up and said "could you use some help?" They helped the stackers, so I offered to pay them. They toldme, "you guys have put up with us for so many years we are just really grateful!" happy dance!! We have fabulous neighbors, none of us perfect-we have sweats which involve big fires and lots of cars, other neighbors have ropings, others have animals htat regularly get out and we all help retrieve,

    Just saying your neighbor could be a real a-hole but he might actually turn out to be okay. I hope it goes that way (the okay way!) sounds lke a great house and congrats!!


    1 members found this post helpful.

  12. #12
    Join Date
    Dec. 29, 1999
    Location
    Harrisburg, PA USA
    Posts
    5,733

    Default

    Argggh. I have one of these, too, and I do ignore him, but he is a PITA. I feel for you. Mine is worse, though. It sounds like you have trees & he doesn't. My neighbor is across the street and also has trees. Big ones. He works 7-3, and it wasn't until I came home one day unexpectedly at 3:30 that I saw him out there with his leaf blower blowing all his leaves from his yard, across the street, to my side in front of my house. As soon as I turned onto our street he saw me (we live close to the corner) and he scooted away. What a jackass.

    So apparently when I thought he must be working like a demon to keep his yard leaf-free and I could only do mine on weekends, his yard is leaf-free because he blows everything over to my front yard.

    Congratulations on your new home and yes, just ignore your idiot neighbor, as frustrating as it is. Just laugh at him, that's what I've taught myself to do. What also helps (and really makes me laugh) is the thought that it could be worse: I could be married to him.


    3 members found this post helpful.

  13. #13
    Join Date
    Mar. 10, 2007
    Location
    Montana
    Posts
    4,968

    Default

    We just moved and had to get used to new neighbors too. It can be a bumpy road but if you stay polite and friendly in time you'll find your common ground. I'm not a leaf raker by any stretch but our neighbor is (he's retired-a common thread here I bet) and retired men like to stay busy, I think. So I offered up some of the good horse manure from all the composting as amends for the horses crapping on his nice yard when they got loose. We get along pretty well now!

    I'm in extreme NW MT which isn't too far from WW, welcome to the corner of the country where the weather hasn't tried to kill us yet!


    1 members found this post helpful.

  14. #14
    Join Date
    Aug. 12, 2010
    Location
    Westford, Massachusetts
    Posts
    3,497

    Default

    Ignore neighbor's leaf obsession, but otherwise be friendly.

    We have LOTS of oak trees here, big, old ones with looong branches that hang over into neighbors' yards and lots of leaves. Our houses are fairly close together as we live in a former lakeside summer community, so the lots aren't big. None of us fuss over whose leaves are whose or whose blew into whose yard. We just clean up what's in our yard when we get around to cleaning up. One of my immediate, nextdoor, neighbors is obsessive about his yard, he mows every day in summer and cleans up leaves as soon as they fall. He doesn't worry about which leaves are his or ours, and I know he cleans up more of ours than we do of his, because we do not rake every day and he does . So, some of ours do blow into his yard between rakings. But, we can't rake every day (full time jobs!), so if he wants his yard always clean, there's nothing to do about it.

    When we have storms that bring whole, large, branches down off the old trees, I run right over and pull the big ones off of his yard and dispose of them, no matter whose they are, he's older and I don't want him hauling around heavy tree limbs to keep his yard perfectly clean. So, we're probably even. He does more light raking of "our" leaves and we do more heavy lifting of "his" branches.



  15. #15
    Join Date
    Jun. 7, 2002
    Posts
    3,795

    Default

    I'd say ignore him, but the noisy leaf blowers are hard to ignore, uh?
    I HATE all those noisy/polluting gadgets.
    I rake leaves, I shovel the driveway. I have a push mower. It's great exercise, and I hate unnecessary noise.
    Neighbors on each side of me have ALL the NOISY toys. Even a ride-mower on a very small lot! But I take it. It's too nice a neighborhood to get too annoyed.
    Oh, and I will wait until all the leaves are down before I manually rake them. We're almost there - Sandy and the latest Nor'easter did a great job.
    Ottbs - The finish line is only the beginning!



  16. #16
    Join Date
    Jan. 5, 2010
    Location
    VA--> Washington (state)
    Posts
    346

    Default

    @ Redmond - we live on the Kitsap Peninsula, due west of Seattle, in Silverdale. The neighborhood's "nicer" but not million dollar nice!

    We've met the neighbors in our general vicinity, exchange pleasantries, etc. I'm used to more Southern towns where I bakeD stuff for new neighbors. Here, one neighbor two houses down brought over some goodies a few weeks ago and I put a thank you note in their mailbox (b/c I didn't know their last name), say hello when I'm out front to walkers (gen b/c my big dog has already said hello and I'm trying to get him back/introduce myself), I wave at everyone i see (if im driving, walking the dog but no one waves back here oddly enough). Maybe people think we're from Oz because we're young & childless by choice (aka too many damn years in school) vs the older families (kids are away at college or grown up).
    Thanks for the thoughts.
    And the wise, Jack Daniels drinking, slow-truck-driving, veteran TB handler who took "no shit from no hoss Miss L, y'hear," said: "She aint wrapped too tight."



  17. #17
    Join Date
    Oct. 27, 2009
    Posts
    1,649

    Default

    Quote Originally Posted by La Chasse View Post
    @ Redmond - we live on the Kitsap Peninsula, due west of Seattle, in Silverdale. The neighborhood's "nicer" but not million dollar nice!

    We've met the neighbors in our general vicinity, exchange pleasantries, etc. I'm used to more Southern towns where I bakeD stuff for new neighbors. Here, one neighbor two houses down brought over some goodies a few weeks ago and I put a thank you note in their mailbox (b/c I didn't know their last name), say hello when I'm out front to walkers (gen b/c my big dog has already said hello and I'm trying to get him back/introduce myself), I wave at everyone i see (if im driving, walking the dog but no one waves back here oddly enough). Maybe people think we're from Oz because we're young & childless by choice (aka too many damn years in school) vs the older families (kids are away at college or grown up).
    Thanks for the thoughts.
    Don't take it personally... There's something we call the "Seattle chill". People are nice once you get to know them but you definitely have to make the effort. When I lived in the city there were people that I would walk past on my way to work every day and not once in 5 years would they muster a smile or a nod. It really is a friendly place underneath and people look out for each other but it can feel a bit cold when you first get here, especially if you're used to someplace that is super friendly. My advice is to keep doing what you're doing - be friendly and people will come around, especially if they're older. The neighbors at our old place in the city were in their 80's and they were wary of us at first but after a few months they became great friends. I would give them eggs from my little flock of city chickens and the man would bring me all kinds of vegetable starts from his greenhouse. Once they realized we weren't young hoodlums they became a little like stand-in grandparents


    1 members found this post helpful.

  18. #18
    Join Date
    Jan. 5, 2010
    Location
    VA--> Washington (state)
    Posts
    346

    Default

    Happy I posted then- never heard of the seattle chill before! I had planned on doing a housewarming/xmas party for some colleagues & neighbors but alas, alack, we sold >50% of our furniture b4 moving xc and a party would be standing, staring at blank walls- and besides, the neighbors might not even come! Guess my husband & I would have to drink all the booze!
    *sigh- the only thing I can gift from my house is horse & medical advice, dog poop and leaves
    There isn't an HOA btw- just a few town laws like no chickens, livestock etc.
    And the wise, Jack Daniels drinking, slow-truck-driving, veteran TB handler who took "no shit from no hoss Miss L, y'hear," said: "She aint wrapped too tight."



  19. #19
    Join Date
    Sep. 5, 2011
    Posts
    2,966

    Default

    [QUOTE=wsmoak;6659201]Yay, more leaf mulch compost for you! You'll need it for your garden.

    /QUOTE]

    I agree. Thank him for giving you more material for a terrific compost pile. There are folks who actually advertise for bagged leaves for compost. And here you have someone blowing them over to you for free.


    1 members found this post helpful.

  20. #20
    Join Date
    Dec. 7, 2006
    Location
    Spruce Grove AB
    Posts
    824

    Default

    I feel your pain! But I have roughly 16 mature poplar trees that border the whole front line of my acreage. They are a royal pain in the rear! The carpet they leave in some spots, no lie is over 14 inches deep! And of course they blow over to my Nieghbor who has a yard that is the envy of the most prestigious golf course!

    I pick up as much as I can, which is usually done in spans over a couple of weeks to a month (they just don't fall at once) plus my tractor bagger can't handle picking the leaves up when they are too deep. Time wise, it takes me roughly 28 hours total! So ya, a crap load of leaves!! Only bonus is, is I can mulch them into my garden and when it can't take anymore, it goes into the corner manure pile(which my lovely, thoughful mare makes her deposit).

    I went over to my neighbors and intro'd myself, and told him I will do my darndest to keep the leaves at bay, and will not just let the wind 'take care' of it. He was actually very pleasant and happy to know that I would be making the effort. And had also said, he can see that there were a lot to pick up and to not sweat the small stuff. The tree line that borders us is actually mature willows that he planted a million years ago and those leaves don't drop until January, march, so he has the same dilemma like me, but his trees don't have those huge honkin leaves the size of tea plates like I do, bit still, they fall in my side as well, and he'll come and pick them up, if he has time or whatever.

    My advice to you, is to just go over and introduce yourself, and be nicey, nicey, 'oh hey, sorry about the leaves bla, bla, bla, I'll pick them up when I can' type of thing.

    Congrats on your new house!! I can't grow cherries where I am so I am jealous!


    1 members found this post helpful.

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