Wandering Roots

Q: My pool deck is lifting in several places as a result of the invasion of roots from my neighbor’s tree. The tree is 50 to 60 feet tall with a canopy at least 70 feet wide. It is deciduous wi...

Growing Trees in Pots

I am looking for small trees that I can place in pots around my swimming pool to give the impression of a cooler, more hospitable climate. I was thinking 8-foot trees would be ideal, but I need to kn...

Silk Trees Ideal for Small Yards

Once in awhile, certain plants and trees practically jump out at you, more glorious than you ever imagined them to be. They stand out as though transported from another place. During the last few day...

A Grove of Trees

I must have pulled at least 10,000 Washington palm seedlings in my lifetime. They come up everywhere in Los Angeles and require nothing but smog to survive. For years, I found nothing redeeming about...

Mayten & Pineapple Guava

Just the other day, in North Hollywood on Sylvan Street, I bumped into two of my favorite trees. One was a pineapple guava (Acca or Feijoa sellowiana) and the other was a mayten (Maytenus boaria). Fo...

Afghan Pines & Mountain Garlands

Question: I have an Afghan pine planted in a hole cut out of my deck. It has been there about 10 years, has a circumference of about 70 inches at the base, and is 6 feet from the house. It currently ...

Training Trees

After careful observation of newly planted trees for almost 30 years, I have come to the conclusion that there is something seriously wrong with most of them. They simply do not have the ability to s...

Leaning Towards Shorter Trees

A week ago, a gigantic pine tree fell over and crashed into a house in Sherman Oaks. Luckily, no one was hurt, but what happened should serve as a reminder of the hazards presented by large trees in ...

From Dogwood to Black-Eyed Susan

Until last Sunday, nearly 15 years had passed since I had seen a dogwood tree. In 1984, I spent several months setting traps for fruit flies in South Central and East Los Angeles. If you recall, the ...