A recent unlawful and flawed pruning of a Deodar cedar tree on Los Feliz Boulevard in front of Louise’s Restaurant has made it important to remind Los Feliz residents about the significance of these Historic-Cultural Monuments. Two varieties, Cedrus Atlantica and Cedrus Deodara were planted on both sides of Los Feliz Boulevard between Riverside Drive and Western Avenue in 1935, as a joint beautification venture of the Los Feliz Improvement Association and the Los Feliz Woman’s Club. The city declared them Historic-Cultural Monument #67 in 1970.
Before any pruning of these trees is performed, permission must be obtained from the Urban Forestry Department and the Cultural Heritage Commission of Los Angeles.
Some facts about Deodar Cedars. The Deodar cedar is a native of the Himalayas and prefers sun. The tree can grow up to 80 feet tall, and once established, it is very drought tolerant. This evergreen responds to supplemental water and mulching to conserve moisture, but watering directly on the foliage or the trunk of the tree should be avoided. Poor soil drainage or overwatering will cause root rot, needle drop, fungal infection and death. The root system on a mature tree can extend up to 250 feet from the trunk of the tree. The feeder roots near the surface of the ground can easily be damaged by heavy objects that are driven onto or placed on them. The trees do not respond well to soil or mulch being piled up around their trunks, and the soil level line has to remain constant or they will be stressed. Do not plant flowers around the base of the tree because the extra water required for the flowers is harmful to the Deodar. Too much water and soil at the base of the trunk fosters fungal diseases and insect infestation. Help us keep these beautiful trees alive and healthy. The trees are an important part of Los Feliz history and one of our neighborhood’s iconic symbols. E-mail the Los Feliz Improvement Association if you see anyone trimming or mistreating the trees:firstname.lastname@example.org and email@example.com
By Tom Ford