Monday, July 25, 2016

Red Car Property: New Growth

Photo: Jonathan Vandiveer, July 15, 2016.  Protected native California Black Walnut Trees on the Red Car Property have been sprouting not only new leaves, but a substantial number of flowers too.  Some of the new leaves and flowers are even on the same stem where the leaves went brown almost immediately after the Silver Lake Fire. (Click on photos to enlarge.)
Photo: Jonathan Vandiveer, July 15, 2016.  If you look closely at the above photo, you can see lots of flowers about to bloom. 
We are all tired of so many depressing photos of brown trees that did not burn in the Silver Lake Fire, yet were "cooked" by the heat. It is a relief to receive photos from multiple Red Car Property neighbors of the native California Black Walnuts Trees acting as if it were spring again. 
Photo: Vandiveer, enlarged from previous photo.  Those green blobs are walnuts that would ordinarily look more like this.
Photo: Stephanie Bartron, July 12, 2016.  Bartron, Red Car Property neighbor, garden designer and co-author of The Drought Tolerant Garden Handbook for Los Angeles County, noted the pattern of growth appeared typical per studies of California native tree recovery after wildfire.  Native trees evolved with our drought/deluge/fire seasons.

The new growth sprouted close to the Black Walnut Trees' trunks.  The dry leaves will drop and serve as mulch on the denuded slope.  So much water was poured onto the slope fighting the fire that all the burned grass, foliage and topsoil were washed off the steep slope.  The mulch of dry leaves is necessary to help the soil retain moisture and put nutrients back into the soil.

Bartron advises consulting a certified arborist if your trees were damaged in the Silver Lake Fire.  Considering CalTrans is clear cutting portions of the 2 Freeway near the Red Car Property, we need to save as many trees as possible to help counter the effects of air pollution. 

Last fall, it was even more odd when the Black Walnuts were simultaneously dropping leaves and walnuts while blooming

We'll be following the recovery of trees from the Silver Lake Fire.