Interesting read on building “microforests”: If you don’t have enough room for actual rewilding, plant a small plot of multilevel native plants and trees in a park, school yard, or even your own back yard — especially in urban areas. Anywhere you can fit an oak (or equivalent), some shorter trees, some bushes and some ground cover. Create a thicket that will support small birds, insects and other animals, and just let it grow.
Horticulturist Katherine Pakradouni is developing a Los Angeles-focused how-to guide at LAMicroforests.com. Update (November): The site is live!
It makes me wish I actually had a back yard!
Most people are stuck at home except for short trips (like this walk), but the hawthorns are still blooming.
I finally stopped to take a photo of this tenacious palm tree. I’m not sure whether it was planted or if it just took root next to the support pillar back when the Green Line was new two decades ago. It’s clearly not actively maintained, judging by all the old dry fronds still attached, and I keep wondering if it’ll get taken out as part of the construction of the Crenshaw line (this is right next to the Y connector where the new line branches off, and the fences are part of the construction site)…but that construction’s almost done, and the tree’s still there.
Just walking around the neighborhood near work there’s a huge difference in temperature depending on:
- How many shade trees? (Palms don’t help)
- How much space between the sidewalk and buildings? (This affects both airflow and reflected sunlight.)
- Is that space paved or plants?
Within the same block it can be…
- Comfortable along a stretch with trees and airflow, even if the shade isn’t continuous…
- Warm walking past a lawn where there’s a breeze, but no shade…
- Still warmer walking past a parking lot that’s reflecting heat…
- Unpleasantly hot in front of a blank wall that both blocks wind and doubles the amount of sunlight hitting you!
Expanded from this Mastodon post.
I’ve described sap as “tree blood” before, but this seems a little too apt.
There are a bunch of tipuana trees mixed in with the jacarandas and palms around the area where I work. (One fewer now.) They look a lot like jacarandas with yellow flowers instead of purple, though the leaves are a little bit wider and the bark is just a bit different. (They make just as big a mess, too.) Tipuanas look close enough that I actually mistook them for jacarandas until I saw them flowering — which, oddly enough, I haven’t seen any of them do yet this year.
And now I know that they have blood-red sap.