Empress staves cut from the Rhodo Garden near Stanley Park last winter, now dried upon my porch and ready to stack indoors. This, to a hornmaker specializing as I do, is wealth beyond any earlier expectations. Don’t hate me for bragging.
Lightweight, straight chambers in renewable wood being the most desirable substance for my type of horn, I have found nothing better than the new growth from a pollarded empress tree. Mature samples in this very town regularly produce over 18 feet of new hardwood in a single growing season. Until this year, I believe the parks gardeners would actually chop it all off and chip it up for composting.
Miraculously straight, chambered hollow between the nodes, and bone dry after 6 months on the porch. The only real challenge is splitting it in half (to carve the chamber), as the crack likes to shear off to one side. Fortunately, I know a guy who’s getting better at that over time.
The Legion of Flying Monkeys Horn Orchestra, my long-suffering and underpaid band, is playing this Saturday, October 29th at the Parade of Lost Souls event in Garden Park (at 2nd Ave. and Garden Drive, East of Victoria). Look for us on the Main Stage at 7pm. Free!