Last Saturday D. and I went on a tree walk in Palo Alto, organized by Canopy, a cool local tree advocacy group. Once a month they get a local tree expert to lead the public on free walks through selected neighborhoods in Palo Alto to look at the really cool and notable trees and talk about the proper care of them.
This walk's tree expert was Arborist Barry. He told us all kinds of stuff about the trees we saw in the Civic Center South of Forest neighborhood, and I took these pics of what stuck my eye.
Arborist Barry shows us the weak crotch in an ornamental pear.
Some lovely flowers in Civic Center Plaza.
Trompe l'oeil on the side of the Post Office (Greg Brown's "Boy with Fishing Pole Stuck on Window Grate").
Flower clusters on a huge ailanthus tree near the plaza.
Another name for ailanthus is stink tree. The flowers don't smell very good.
An eagle emblem over the door to the post office near the plaza.
A stone lion guarding the entrance to a house.
The blossoms of a coral tree, a.k.a lipstick tree.
The coral tree is native to Brazil and doesn't like temperatures below 30ºF.
The vine-shrouded Laning Chatueau is flanked by 2 huge deodar cedars in the forground.
A loquat tree, full of edible fruit.
And where there's a loquat tree, there's loquat litter making a mess on the ground.
Linden tree, a.k.a. lime tree, a.k.a. basswood tree.
Here's a medieval love poem, "Under der linden," or "Under the Linden Tree."
The blossoms of a chitalpa (a cross between Catalpa bignonioides and Chilopsis linearis).
A bench nestles in a bower of brilliant bougainvillea.
An enormous valley oak's contorted limbs go sprawling overhead.
Intentional displays of passionate scenes and immodest semi-nudities! (Excerpt from a 1932 local newspaper hung on wall of vacant building.)
Patterns on elm bark are like a jigsaw puzzle.
A tree plaque on someone's house along our route.
This mess on the sidewalk is fallen fruit from a Moreton Bay fig tree. They aren't edible.
The Moreton Bay fig has some big gnarly roots.
The bark of a cork oak looks like an alien landscape.
Corks pulled from wine bottles were once part of a cork oak. The outer bark is first stripped off the tree when it is about 15 years old, and then at 7- to 12-year intervals thereafter for at least 100 years or more. The inner living cambium tissue is not injured in this process.
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D. took the following pics:
Tree huggers, all!
Canopy docent Urban, next to arborist Barry, sports an evergreen shoot on the bill of his cap.
Coral tree blossoms, very dramatic.
One of our group gets touchy-feely with the foliage of a linden tree.
The fountain in the courtyard at the Laning Chateau.
Repeated cutting in order to maintain the sidewalk has caused the roots of this sweet gum tree to adapt by growing in this pattern. This is not a good thing to do to the tree.