Tuesday, June 16, 2009

A Tree Grows in Echo Park?

Jacaranda Trees are phenomena in Southern California. Each spring, generally around June, they explode into masses of purple blossoms, which they then drop on every car in the neighborhood. It’s why I’m thinking of getting a purple car next time.

We have many beautiful trees in our yard, including a fig tree that provides free figs for the entire neighborhood and the squirrels every year, and live Christmas trees we planted when the boys were small that now tower over the hillside. But yes, we have no jacarandas.

That’s why I was so excited when I heard that LADWP was giving away FREE Jacarandas. I immediately sent the info to my husband, who went online to see how we could get our beautiful Jacaranda tree. We had visions of purple brilliance dancing in our heads,

Jacaranda Tree

To get the free tree, he had to take a course online, draw a plan of our yard, and take a test. He did all this and we eagerly awaited the delivery of or botanical wonder. LADWP warned that they could make surprise inspections to see how our tree was faring. No problem, we thought. It’s going to be fabulous.

Yesterday, as we did the final 500 uphill steps on our walk, we saw the free tree truck heading toward us. Was today the day? Had our Jacaranda been delivered? Were purple blossoms within out grasp?

Jacaranda tree

We quickened our steps and raced up the front stairs to see our tree.

Josh w/ Jacaranda tree

Okay. I knew it wasn’t going to be big. But I thought at least it would be more than 50% alive. A study of the leaves did not fill us with confidence.

Josh w/ Jacaranda tree

It did, however, come with a bag of mulch and some fine support poles… which are far bigger than the tree, as you can see. Here’ s my son Josh. He’s also far bigger than the tree.

Josh w/ Jacaranda tree

Hopefully LADWP won’t inspect the tree before we have a chance to get it thriving. I think we may have a challenge ahead of us.

Josh w/ Jacaranda tree

And here’s a butterfly bracelet I made to match the tree… as soon as it grows a few feet and starts to bloom. (The tree, not the bracelet.)

Here today, gone to etsy:




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