Friday, April 24, 2009

Cutting Remarks

I've posted before about the common yet curious abundance of topiary in this part of the world. Fellow San Gabriel Valley blogger Keith at Gem City Images joined me in a bit of a competition to see who could find the most outrageous example. (I think it was a toss up!)

Which brings us to this odd arrangement in front of bank offices on Fair Oaks. I'm still trying to figure it out ... did a landscape designer arrange this seemingly random pattern? Were bushes already there when an over-zealous gardener decided to get creative? Is this some kind of joke with hedge fund managers? Does this spell something in braille? Morse Code?

Maybe I'm weird, but I just love this stuff.

16 comments:

Judy Williams said...

A cake decorator comes to mind immediately. Maybe the topiary gods came down with a giant piping thing and went "plop plop plop."

Jean Spitzer said...

I love topiary; my favorite gas station is on Lake across from Borders, the one with topiary pegasus. But the strangest example that springs to mind is a deadend residential street west of Polytechnic School (I don't remember the exact location). If I recall correctly, the entire street has topiary as their street trees, including--I think-- some chess pieces.

altadenahiker said...

Yes, you are weird. One time I had a new gardener and came home to find my shrubs had turned into lollipops. (Did anyone come up with a caption for that lugnut? I was going to post another Christopher Walken vid.)

Jean, I know that street. What's up, I wonder.

I wonder this in the FULNESS of time.

Susan C said...

Judy, it looks like my icing work. I can never space out the dots evenly.

You'll see a lot of topiary style trees in Northwest Pasadena, where a lot of Japanese gardeners once lived.

Dixie Jane said...

Looks like large hairy green biscuits. Ewwwwwww! What kind of jelly would be fitting?

Yakpate said...

The night-stalking topiary cutter strikes again!

Uh, Laurie... exactly what tools do you carry on your night forays?

Trish said...

reminds me of my grandparents driveway. They had a mixture of tall shrubs between their property and the next up the street. Their Japanese gardener was only so tall, his ladder only went so high and his clippers could only reach so high on the oleanders. They had perfectly trimmed bushes up to about 10 feet high, then it was like an 80's haircut poofing out at the top and tipping over a bit.

If I recall correctly about these shrubs in front of the bank, there used to be a handful more, but some died out and these are what is left---they tried to save what they could and hoped they would grow out.

If it is Morse Code, I suspect it says "save me, please replant me somewhere else where I'll be better taken care of!"

Virginia said...

Herbaceous ottomans.
V

Trish said...

Virigina---that gives me the idea of smokeable ottomans...looks a little like little buds...not that I'd know what those sorts of things look like!

TheChieftess said...

Interesting....when I saw the photo, I totally missed the topiaries and was entranced by the color of the reflection in the window and the contrast with the brick...the topiary were totally inconsequential!!! They were merely additional texture and form...interesting shot Laurie!!!

Laurie said...

Hi gang,

I will evermore refer to these bushes as V so aptly named them, "herbaceous ottomans."

Thanks, everyone! Until tomorrow...

Sumi Ko said...

The colors in this shot are wonderful, but the topiary appears a bit odd. My first thought was that they were originally round, then a new gardener just couldn't maintain the high standard of perjection, he gave up one morning and simply took his electric saw and did a fast buzz job!

I would loved to have seen the shrubs belonging to Trish' grandparent's, must have been crazy fun to see!

Jeanie said...

They're volume controls and other adjustment controls for the building, the gardeners must have sheared off the labels long ago, so the building just quietly sits there--good thing the focus button works.

Kim said...

Coins, I tell you. Round, hard cash. Midas has spilled his pouch out and is counting them out on the berm, planning to slot them later, piggy bank style, into the bank's depository.

I grew up near D-land and you might recall there was a fairly famous display of topiary wonders in the park itself during the 60s. Then topiary animals started to be seen on several motel grounds on the periphery of D-land's parking lot, and from there, we started to see them in several places around OC by the 70s. I imagine gardening influences just kept widening the ripples further out throughout SoCal. If my childhood memory can be trusted, I think Disney's Wonderful World of Color may have done a piece about their elaborate topiary collection and how they were created.
I love the geometric elements and colors in this shot, Lori. Looks like a sculptural installation.
-Kim

Keith said...

Thanks for the shout out! This building looks vaguely familiar. A bank on Fair Oaks in South Pasadena - I think I may have worked there many years ago. The particular topiary makes me think they were big on the idea but short on imagination.

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