I took a short walk

while my car took a smog test.

The smog test center is across from the Ficus elastica last seen here.


A block away, I wish I could take better pictures of the fabulous and very drought-tolerant Guerrero Street median planting.


A woman in this neighborhood discovered a city ordinance that allows planting the median. The nursery up the street donated diverse plant material, and the neighbors all pitched in on planting day.

This all started at the intersection of Guerrero and Cesar Chavez two years ago and now the planting extends three blocks with a fourth on the way. Plant material includes include palm and olive trees, yucca, aloe, agave, something that looks like leucospermum, and miscellaneous tough succulents.


Maybe another time I'll get better pictures. More information here.

Farther along, Juri Commons.


This so-called mini-park cuts diagonally between two parallel streets. It used to be a right-of-way for the Southern Pacific railroad, as is often the case with odd diagonals in California. Today there's a little playground and some plants.


Leptospermum scoparium and Cestrum auranticum.


The Leptospermum is a workhorse, but the Cestrum doesn't turn up much.


It's probably poisonous and it smells foul up close, but the abundant orange flowers and white fruit (more abundant in summer and fall) are nice and it's relatively carefree.


Some guy's dog...


Small Tibouchina urvilleana, apparently introduced to the California nursery trade by the father of the guy who designed the gardens at Disneyland.


What those will eventually grow up to be:


Time to go get the car.


(She passed!)


Pam/Digging said...

Those Tibouchina urvilleanas are lovely. I've never seen them before. They look something like crepe myrtle or rose of Sharon, but with the purple color of jacaranda.

chuck b. said...

They're prettier in real life than they are in those pictures. I think they need pruning up to show off their best features. Very florific. They're covered in 2" purple flowers for most of the year here (flowers that don't have much to offer insect and bird life but still), and the leaves and young stems feel like felt. This time of year the old leaves turn a nice red and drop. The leaves are also what identify this plant as belonging to the Melastomaceae. The common name for T. urvilleana (around here) is Princess Plant.

Annie in Austin said...

I like the way you give directions, as in "across the street from the Ficus...".

Pam at Tales from the Microbial Laboratory in SC grows the same Tibouchina in a sheltered area. It gets whacked back enough every winter to keep it from getting too large for the spot. That is a very covetable color, I must say!

I'm glad your car passed, ChuckB.

Annie at the Transplantable Rose