Skip to main content

The Meaning of Trees: California's Oaks and Their Protection

Coast Live Oaks in L.A.

Trees. I have a thing for trees. The chestnuts in Central Europe and the fir trees of the Alps are among my favorites as are the oaks in California. No matter which kind, there is something about trees that makes me feel grounded, something that connects me to a before and to an after; trees signify dignity, endurance, patience; they stand for adaptability and integrity at the same time, for a balance between the two.

In the urban sprawl of L.A. trees sometimes have a hard time. The native oak trees are no exception which is why the County of L.A. chose to cover all oak species by the oak tree ordinance. With it oaks are recognized as "significant historical, aesthetic, and ecological resources" and as a unique but threatened plant heritage. The ordinance states that "a person shall not cut, destroy, remove, relocate, inflict damage, or encroach into the protected zone of any tree of the oak tree genus without first obtaining a permit".


debi said…

I agree with you about trees.

I have massive trees in my yard; they provide cool shade during hot afternoons, they are a haven for many varieties of birds and they make my yard beautiful.

And they're fun to climb.

On each of my kid's first birthdays, we planted trees (they were mere twigs at the time). Russell and Rachel still claim their trees that now each top thirty feet in height.

Though my kids moved on years ago, their trees are still here keeping me company fulfilling their "historical significance".
Reese said…
Christina - I love what you shared about trees. Endurance, adaptability and integrity.. indeed, trees are the gifts of God.

In Penang, they are always the first to go whenever there is new development. My heart aches whenever I spot a missing tree...I wish we have the ordinance to protect the trees.

Debi - wow! What a special tradition you have for the family.

Popular posts from this blog

Visions of Editors: How Good Stories Go to Waste

Recently I stumbled upon Visions of Mary, a war story by Joseph Richardson. The book begins in a present day emergency room in Tennessee: A physician, a good guy who takes his work seriously, fights to establish the identity of a man who was found wandering about in a snow storm. The M.D.'s questions bring up memories of World War II in the disoriented patient. Thanks to the lost man's recollections we eventually learn that he is Colonel John Stone, an American war hero. The colonel tells the physician how he enlisted and became a pilot, how he married his sweetheart, Mary, and how he almost died when the Japanese shot down his plane, the "China Doll," in the last months of the war. After the attack, Stone and his men found themselves on a raft in the middle of a shark infested nowhere called the Pacific. Without food, water and radio connection their death seemed imminent. The men's fight for survival is where the book turns exciting: plunged into this crisis,

Lyman, Whitford, Reality Check: A Career in the West Wing?

On a chilly Sunday night in February two young girls in jeans and light blouses were standing in front of the artists' entrance of one of two local art theaters in Pasadena, California. The pathway beyond the barrier, an iron gate, was barely lit. It stayed empty for a long time while the girls, shifting weight from one foot to the other, chatted and giggled. After a while a figure emerged from the shadows. The girls fell silent but it was the wrong actor. When the right man, Bradley Whitford, finally appeared he was wearing a bicycle helmet pushed way up on his forehead. Whitford is best known for playing Josh Lyman in the TV series  The West Wing   but on that night he had performed in the Pasadena Playhouse's production of Yasmina Reza’s   Art.  The girls stopped the actor, told him about their social studies class and how the teacher would have them watch The West Wing.  Whitford smiled, asked, "Which school is it?" and autographed the two print-outs the girls

Solid Rock, Human Transience (The Huntington 2)

Organic blend: Chinese garden at the Huntington The Chinese garden at The Huntington Library, Art Collections and Botanical Gardens in San Marino (L.A. county) is a magical place. It blends the man-made and the natural, architecture with trees, straight lines and curves, all in an organic way. Last week, as I was wandering the cobbled paths of the garden I decided to take a closer look at some of the rocks. I got to my knees, admired the shades of white and grey, the undertones of purple, green, and red; I let my hand glide over the limestone's spurs, cracks, and sharp edges, felt the coolness of the rock against my skin, its enduring solidity against my human transience - and decided to look up some facts. Spurs and cracks: 50 Chinese stone workers flew in to carve the stone Transplants in L.A.: 850 tons of rock The limestone rocks in the Huntington's Chinese garden are transplants. They were imported from Lake Tai in the Yangtze Delta in China. Acc