The Dry Garden: Engineered to fail

Posted on | December 16, 2011 | No Comments

As the days of Occupy LA’s tenancy around City Hall Park became numbered last month, I wrote in the op-ed pages of this paper that the city should seize the opportunity to replace the trashed lawn with a model garden demonstrating state of the art storm water capture and drought tolerant planting. The Mar Vista Community Council immediately began a campaign to support it. The Sierra Club, Natural Resources Defense Council, California Native Plant Society and Theodore Payne Foundation for Wildflowers and Native Plants each wrote the Department of Recreation and Parks calling for the city to seize the opportunity. But the most forceful argument came in the one-two punch of the November 30 windstorm swiftly followed by this week’s rain.

Click here to keep reading in The Dry Garden column in the Los Angeles Times about why floods follow winter windstorms and what this has to do with trees. For tips from some of the region’s leading arborists and urban foresters about how to prevent “tree failure,” click here. This piece, from late in 2006, looked at the challenges faced  by the City of LA as it began its “million tree” program and the challenges of steadily renewing an aging urban canopy. Suffice it to say that the challenge of thinning over planted areas and planting barren ones have only intensified given the mixed results of the mayor’s program.

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