I was not expecting to ID this tree this way. At the end of my street is a tiny triangular park – by tiny, I mean maybe 0.2-0.3 acres – lined with what I’ve been guessing might be some kind of Eucalyptus. They’re tall, twisty, and have a peeling or splitting bark that reveals many multicolored blotches beneath.
Today I learned what they are while looking up a Chinese elm my friend told me fell in the wind storm this week. It was 70 years old, and 50’ tall. I wasn’t sure a) why that was newsworthy in LA (unless it was famous, somehow), or b) how my friend heard about it, and why she remembered it. It dawned on me around lunch today, however, that it might be laying there, waiting for me to swing by and cut it up for my own usage. I looked it up, found the story related to it here (w/ video of tree, truck, and guy (last half)), and realized it was the kind of tree in the park down the street. I love them. I’ve been really itching to know what they are, what they’re like inside, how well the wood works, and what colors, grains, and textures are lurking within. The LA Times “Tree of the Week” feature has a nice photo and info about them.
I hadn’t noticed the part of the article about it landing on a truck, though, and from my office, the video didn’t load, so I didn’t have the thumbnail image of said destruction. I arrived today only to find the tree completely removed:
Then I turned my head to the other side of the road and saw this shocker:
Looks like it took out the backboard of that basketball net, too:
Less than a block away stood 2 more gracious Chinese elms, directly opposite similarly-tall Benjamin Figs (Ficus benjamina). I’m guessing the homeowners around there are eyeing their elms a bit more warily than usual this week:
ABC's recap of this event has a rather epic fallen-tree shot of the fallen tree, ripped up earth and sidewalk, and crushed truck laid over their embedded video, which, at the end, shows a wood chipper near the fallen tree. I’m guessing they fed all the branches through it. It would hurt me to know they ground up the beautiful trunk and larger limb bits, though I know deep down they just mulched them, or threw them in a landfill somewhere. I need to get friendly with these tree cleanup guys, and let them know they have a great alternative to ruining all of the gorgeous, exotic woods around here :)
-- Gary, Los Angeles, video game animator