Monday, July 27, 2009

Rooting Around

South Pasadena's many heritage trees are almost as famous as the Craftsman houses. While Southern California is noted for its palm trees -- and South Pas is home to quite a few of them -- many other gorgeous specimens tangle up our local landscape. Streets are lined with towering camphors, oaks, sycamores, maples and pines. They stretch out into a thick canopy overhead, offering perches for the parrots and shade for the people. They also reach deep into the earth, cracking sidewalks on the surface and breaking old clay pipes underground.

I love the leafy tops, but it's those roots below that always make me grab my camera.


15 comments:

Judy Williams said...

They are like giant steadfast feet digging their toes into the cracked summer ground. Although not sinister, they remind me of those apple throwing trees in the Wizard of Oz.

Yakpate said...

OMG! This is another shot for my request file... I would place it right next to my Ashes & Snow elephant posters!

The textures, the myriad of colors and the composition are gorgeous.

My first thought... the enchanted forest!

Jean Spitzer said...

This is so beautiful. The tree bases have been capturing my interest lately, too.

Double "D" said...

Wow, this is a great one.
They're like guardians of the forest.
Beautiful photo Laurie.

Shadow said...

Wow, never saw trees like that before Laurie, they look like those giants in Lord of the rings…
As if they have feet and will walk some day. Very unusual color too.

Mister Earl said...

South Pasadena's favorite sport: Tree Basing!

Shanna said...

How very bizarre. I was just admiring roots late yesterday in the parking lot at CVS on Colorado. And Jean is also seeing roots. How zeitgeisty (sp?)!

dbdubya said...

Wonderful photo. It reminds me of an old, scary cartoon where trees were evil. Can't remember much about it, but they had feet like these roots.

TheChieftess said...

I'm right there with Judy waiting for the apples to start flying or the flying monkeys to start roaring in...

Laurie said...

Hey everyone,

Judy, Shadow and Db, when I saw this shot I thought of THe WIzard of Oz, Lord of the Rings and the old Looney Tunes cartoon of the mean trees! Great minds...

Yak, you got it. I owe you the green house/pink tree print, too!

Double D, thank you so much. I'm fond of this shot, as well as the black and white one I linked. It's so easy to be a decent photographer when you have such a great subject!

Still laughing at "tree basing."

Here's to the zeitgeist, Shanna and Jean!

Til tomorrow, people. Thanks again for such nice words.

Anton said...

Back about '76 or so they cut down one of the camphors at the library and I took one of the stubby logs back to my house (just lived two blocks away on Windsor) and made a little table for my bedroom. I'll always remember that lovely smell...

Laurie said...

Anton, I agree about that lovely camphor smell. After a rain, our front yard smells like Vicks Vaporub! My little daughter loves to crumble the leaves and smell them.

I'll bet your table is cool. Thanks for the story!

dbdubya said...

I've planted camphor trees at different homes, including my current house. They are one of my favorites. They are actually a cinnamon tree. If you crush the small berries after they turn black, they smell just like cinnamon.

Laurie said...

Another scent delight from camphor trees?! Oh, now I want to crush a berry. I love crushing the leaves. (I'm easily amused, you know.) Cool to know, DB!

dbdubya said...

The botanical name is Cinnamomum Camphora.