Silk Floss Trees on Harbor Boulevard Symbolize Downtown Redevelopment



Why did I (and many others) advocate the removal of the Silk Floss trees in downtown Fullerton? Damaged and dangerous sidewalks for one thing. And slimy-skinned, scrotum-shaped pod bombs, giant wafting cotton swabs, and naked spike armored monstrosities, depending on the season, for another. And let’s not forget the blocked architectural elevations, signage, etc.

About ten years ago the City started removing a few of the worst offending silk flossers and replacing them with some other brand of tree. Of course they plopped the new ones right back in the same holes as before – rather than plant them at property lines where they wouldn’t block architectural elevations and business signs so badly.

And of course it never occurred to the clever folks in Redevelopment that these trees, wedged into the narrow sidewalk space would never develop proper crowns and generally look like wretched half-trees.

Now that the big Harbor Boulevard redesign (you know the one that killed on-street parking, created a traffic tunnel, and doomed regularly functioning storefronts) is nearing its 30th birthday it seems like a good time to readdress the mess that Redevelopment has caused on Harbor and talk about a different model.

A picture, as they say, is worth a 1,000 words.

10 Replies to “Silk Floss Trees on Harbor Boulevard Symbolize Downtown Redevelopment”

  1. tired think twice about resting up against a tree in downtown Fullerton, your libel to get more than you asked for.

  2. I read that the city had planned to remove 21 of the Floss Silk trees on Harbor along the sidewalk in 1997. Did that ever happen?

  3. In downtown Claremont for Sunday lunch AGAIN.. My husband and I continue to comment on how pleasant.. All ages (0-80 something) eating, strolling (Sunday Farmers’ Market helps), buying.. Unique stores NOT JUST bars and restaurants..

    Wide sidewalks, curbside beds w/low, colorful plants at each intersection.. Banners on lightposts announcing Holiday Season…

    Oh to have the same Sunday experience in downtown Fullerton, NOT!

  4. Hey, those are kapok trees, a rain forest tree which was chosen to furnish a canopy of branches shading our thriving downtown. Can’t you gripers wait another 80 or 100 years for the canopy to fully develop? Besides, you could get a cherry picker, collect the kapok and sell it. It was used to stuff Mae Wests in WWII.

    The patrons of our downtown don’t care if they can’t see the architecture. There’s only two of us who ever noticed that it could be something saying, “downtown!”

  5. You may as well have planted a Monkey Puzzle tree.
    I am so perplexed, I have noticed in most cities they have their heads up there ar*es, they hire a landscape architect/designer and for some Godforsaken reason they lack common sense. It seems that they only have the title of “designer”but do not have a concept on how a tree grows, the various bushes and plants and the maintenance required.
    Most cities hire these fools, … I will rephrase that! the fools who are elected by us fools and paid by taxpaying fools hire fools to design landscape for our foolish city who begs to get ripped off by these contracted shiester’s.
    I guess the city administration needs to make sure they have plenty of work for the son-in-law etc.

    1. PM, I have to agree. I’ve been in the biz for 10+ years and have never met a landscape architect that wasn’t just about a complete imbecile.

      They seem to have zero idea how to work with architecture, they give no thought to the eventual crown size of a tree; or to root dammage, leaf, seed and flower droppings, and almost no thought to how people walk (the shortest distance, when they can), etc.

      How this job ever got elevated to “architect” status is way beyond me.

      The trees on Harbor stand as dangerous, dirty, ugly reminders of their “designers” ineptitude.

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